Aldar publishes second annual sustainability report

Report shows strong progress in 2019, Aldar CEO says; plots ambitious roadmap for the future through several key commitments

Aldar Properties has published its second annual sustainability report, demonstrating steady progress in 2019 and charting an ambitious roadmap for the future through several key commitments.

Formulated in close alignment with key global indices, including the Global Report Initiative (GRO) Standards, the report formally enshrines Aldar’s approach to responsible corporate citizenship, going beyond financial considerations to rigorously chart the company’s wider ESG performance, a WAM report said.

Commenting on the launch of Aldar’s second sustainability report, Talal Al Dhiyebi, Chief Executive Officer, Aldar, said: “From the UAE Green Agenda to the UN Sustainable Development Goals, our country’s leadership have consistently placed sustainability at the heart of their development plans and set a strong benchmark for others to follow.

“Aldar’s second sustainability report marks our continued contribution to these important national agendas, as well as a recognition of the growing importance of ESG issues to our stakeholders and the wider investment community. We are delighted to have made such strong progress in 2019 and look forward to delivering on our ambitious commitments moving forward,” he added.

The report marks a strategic statement of intent to proactively lead on ESG issues over the long term, which is most notably seen through a series of ambitious commitments cascaded across the company’s Economy, People, Community and Environment pillars.

These include the development of Aldar’s Carbon Neutral Action Plan, the integration of sustainability into investment criteria and due diligence, and the auditing of all primary contractors against the company’s Worker Welfare Policy by the end of 2021.

Greg Fewer, Chief Financial and Sustainability Officer, said: “From the outset, we have strived to create a company where sustainability actively informs the way we operate, collaborate, innovate and grow. Aldar’s second sustainability report marks an important milestone on this journey, with a strong evidence base, a clear roadmap for the future and the introduction of a refreshed sustainability strategy and framework.

“The various achievements and disclosures within the report not only showcase Aldar as a responsible corporate citizen; they also future-proof our operations for a world where sustainability and growth will always go hand in hand,” Fewer added.

To ensure investor-grade reporting that allows for year-on-year progress to be extensively monitored, all four pillars have been meticulously broken down into various key performance indicators, KPIs, mapped against Aldar’s Corporate Strategy. By setting 2019 as a baseline year, Aldar has significantly expanded its sustainability data coverage to reach the entirety of its residential, commercial, hospitality, leisure and retail assets with Aldar Academies set for inclusion in 2020.

For best-in-class governance, Aldar has also evolved the role of Chief Financial Officer to Chief Financial and Sustainability Officer, embedded ESG metrics into the performance systems of its Executive Management and established a Sustainability Council to accelerate the integration of sustainability across the company’s Corporate, Development and Asset Management business divisions.

The report evaluates Aldar’s performance against 23 material issues across the company’s four sustainability pillars. These issues were derived from internal and external stakeholder engagements and materiality processes that allowed the company to identify its most salient ESG issues, identify impacts and formulate an evidence-based strategy for the future. Based on these exercises, Aldar has also identified the eight Sustainable Development Goals most salient for achieving its corporate strategy.

The report covers the period between January and December 2019. It spans Aldar’s Development Management and Asset Management businesses.

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