Go green or be left out — GreenTech

The Malaysian Green Technology Corp (GreenTech Malaysia) is calling for the private sector to increase its investments in green technology in order to ensure the country’s sustainable development.

GreenTech Malaysia acting chief executive officer Syed Ahmad Syed Mustafa said there is a need for more involvement from the private sector, especially given the fact that Malaysia has pledged to reduce its greenhouse gas emissions by 45% by 2030 in relation to the country’s 2005 gross domestic product under the Paris Agreement in 2016.

The Paris Agreement is a multilateral environmental agreement under the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, and aims to strengthen the global response to climate change threats, in the context of sustainable development and efforts to eradicate poverty.

“We would like to encourage the private sector to invest in green investments and work together with the government. Of course, the government can set up the policy, but real investment must come from the private sector,” he told The Edge Financial Daily in an interview.

Furthermore, Syed Ahmad highlighted that corporations that do not implement sustainable practices in their businesses will be at risk of losing out in the competitive global environment.

“If you are not going green, then you will be left out. Even if you want to export products, people want to see what kind of sustainability practices do you have — the raw materials [that you are using], and the processes — whether it degrades the environment. It’s a requirement now, and it’s moving fast,” he said.

One of the main challenges to green investments within corporate Malaysia is the lack of awareness, said Syed Ahmad, especially among financial institutions. Financial institutions, he said, need to assume a bigger role in providing financing for green investments.

“Of course, they (financial institutions) will have to look at the viability of those investments — what kind of returns they can get. But then they need to be aware that without providing that kind of investments, they would probably not be sustainable themselves in the future,” he stressed.

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