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Bahrain inks key 'go green' accord

Manama, June 12, 2008

Bahrain became the first country in the region to sign the Stockholm Convention on Persistent Organic Pollutants (POPs), which legally binds governments to discontinue the use of chemicals that cause the most harm to the environment.

It includes products used in the construction, petrochemical, aluminium, water treatment and waste management industries and also pesticides.

Bahrain today is at the forefront of plans to introduce green technology in the Gulf, said a
government official.

A major conference and exhibition on green technology, said to be the first-of-its-kind in the world, will be held at the Bahrain International Exhibition Centre (BIEC) in February.

It will introduce the concept to the rest of the Gulf countries and promote the investment opportunities for the private sector.

Hundreds of delegates from around the region are expected to participate in the event, being organised in conjunction with the Monaco-based Crans Montana Forum.

The United Nations Industrial Development Organisation (Unido)'s Manama-based Investment and Technology Promotion (ITP) office is working with Bahrain to implement the convention.

The plan is being discussed at a two-day workshop, at the Coral Elite Suites, Sanabis, under the patronage of Industry and Commerce Minister Dr Hassan Fakhro.

Around a dozen people, including officials from Egypt, Jordan, Saudi Arabia, Sudan, Yemen and Djbouti, are taking part in the event, which ends today.

'The ratification of the convention is a golden opportunity for entrepreneurs and the private sector to invest because cleaner production and renewable energy has a return,' said head of the Unido ITP office Dr Hashim Hussain.

'They no longer have to be afraid about investing in environmental issues and it can bring lucrative profits if they find the right opportunity and the correct technology.'

Unido chief of the Vienna-based Stockholm Convention and Chemicals Management Unit Mohammed Eisa praised Bahrain's pioneering role in helping to promote green technology in the region.

'By holding this workshop here we hope to use Bahrain as a stimulator case for the rest of the Gulf countries,' he told the Gulf Daily News, our sister publication.

'So far investment has only been in production and product-related technology but we need more environment-related technology.'

'In the past environmental technology was considered expensive but actually that is not the case and there are a lot of economies of scale for companies in saving energy and water.'-TradeArabia News Service




Tags: Bahrain | pioneer | Stockholm Convention | POPs | greeen |

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