Empowering Islamic Finance: UNDP and Warba Bank Initiate the Development of an Advanced ESG Online Course

Pioneering Capacity Building for Sustainable Development and Responsible Investment

The United Nations Development Programme’s (UNDP) Istanbul International Center for Private Sector in Development (ICPSD), UNDP Kuwait and Warba Bank are proud to announce the launch of a project to develop an advanced online course titled “Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) Standards and Practices for Islamic Financial Institutions”.

The ICPSD, one of the five global policy centers of UNDP, leads this initiative, reinforcing its commitment to transformative partnerships with the private sector and foundations for sustainable development. Warba Bank, the primary donor of this initiative, demonstrates its unwavering commitment to sustainability through this collaboration.

This innovative online course comes at a critical juncture, addressing the urgent need for skill enhancement in sustainable development, climate change mitigation, and adaptation within the Islamic finance sector. Islamic financial institutions stand at the forefront of forging a path towards a green, resilient, and inclusive future. By incorporating robust ESG practices, these institutions can better navigate risks, adapt to evolving market dynamics, attract ethical investors, and harness opportunities in sustainable and responsible investment.

The online course aims to further enhance the synergy between Islamic finance and ESG investing, emphasizing risk management, transparent reporting, and accountability. It equips participants with the knowledge to identify Shariah-compliant sustainable investment opportunities, fostering a collaborative approach to finance and sustainability.

This initiative is intended to serve not only as a learning platform; but also, as a catalyst for dialogue and partnership among Islamic finance professionals, ESG investors, and sustainable development experts. It contributes to sustainable solutions to global challenges, reinforcing the role of Islamic finance in achieving the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

Comprising video lectures and interactive learning tools, the online course is scheduled to be accessible online in the last quarter of 2024 and will be open for free to anyone who has an interest in Islamic finance and ESG. It will also serve as an advanced module to the existing Massive Open Online Course (MOOC) titled “Islamic Finance for the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs),” co-developed by UNDP ICPSD, the Islamic Development Bank (IsDB), and Durham University Business School.

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