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Dubai Chamber Sustainability Network members recognised for 2020 achievements

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Dubai Chamber recently hosted the Sustainability Network Achievements Ceremony to acknowledge the commendable work done by its members in implementing sustainable and responsible practices and solutions in response to new challenges created by Covid-19.

Last year, 18 new companies joined the Network, bringing the membership to 69. Launched in 2010, as a platform for the business community to identify and share expertise on CSR and sustainability challenges, the Network has initiated many initiatives to foster the adoption of sustainable practices among the local business community.

Participants during the sustainability network virtual event

The ceremony was attended by over 100 participants, including Belaid Rettab, Chief Economist and Senior Director, Economic Research & Sustainable Business Development, Dubai Chamber of Commerce & Industry, members of the Sustainability Network, business leaders, experts and decision-makers in the field of sustainability.

Among members joining as speakers were: Yasmine Berbir, General Business Manager, Nestle; Kiran Kumar, Country HSE Manager,

ABB; and Vennie Cabantug, HR Manager, Serco Group who shared valuable insights on their respective companies’ experiences with the Dubai Chamber Sustainability Network. The speakers urged members and the wider business community in Dubai to proactively participate in its initiatives.

Addressing the honourees, Dr. Rettab congratulated the members for their commitment and success in adopting and enforcing responsible business practices during unprecedented times, and noted the recognised companies serve as a leading example for the rest of the business community.

“During Covid-19, the Network’s role became more important as it stepped up to support businesses navigating new challenges created by the pandemic. We have seen many new sustainability and CSR initiatives come to light, which have helped companies mitigate impact and position their businesses to emerge stronger in the post-pandemic era,” said Dr. Rettab.

In 2020 alone, the Sustainability Network organised 19 knowledge sharing events including virtual seminars and campaigns covering matters of interest for businesses responding to Covid-19 challenges and adapting to the new normal, he revealed, that these events attracted more than 10,000 participants representing a wide range of industries. These events positively influenced the business community, while raising the flag of Dubai’s business reputation in the world, he added.

These events addressed important issues such as employee health, wellness and safety, engaging young talent, supply chain resilience, safe disposal of PPE and e-waste, green buildings, Emiratisation, and engaging remotely people of determination through assistive technology, and highlighted best practices to overcome pressing business, social and environmental threats especially posed by the pandemic.

Addressing the issue of late payments for suppliers and subcontractors in the midst of Covid-19, the Sustainability Network launched the task force on Prompt Payment Practices to Suppliers and Subcontractors. The task force is dedicated to raising awareness about the issue of late payments and their negative effects, encouraging responsible payment practices all along the supply chain and supporting SMEs with cash flow management.

Sustainability Network members also shared their practical knowledge and contributed to content development of various toolkits, checklists and guidebooks to support various publications that will help the Dubai business community and even outside in modifying their existing practices or changing these completely as per the systematic process given.

Set up in 2004, the Centre for Responsible Business has played a very critical role in guiding businesses in becoming more aware of the business, social and environmental value of sustainable practices and putting in place such practices.

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