Our path to COP28.

Driving action on global climate change.


COP28 is taking place in Dubai from 30 November to 12 December 2023.

DIFC and the Global Ethical Finance Initiative (GEFI) are bringing the global finance community together to advance thinking and action relating to climate and environmental, social and governance (ESG) principles in the build-up to COP28.


The programme is focused on four core workstreams:

Delivering net zero

Driving awareness around climate change on the Path to COP28. Offer climate finance training, and supporting family businesses and private equity investors to align portfolios with net zero.

  • Planning a CPD-accredited programme to build knowledge and awareness of COP28 and climate finance
  • Publishing an analysis of c2,000 equity investments made by Scottish Local Government Pension Schemes
  • Leveraging our position as UN Principles for Responsible Banking Stakeholder Endorser to encourage banks to decarbonize their lending books

Considering nature and biodiversity

This includes scoping an approach to nature and biodiversity as a financial risk. The group will publish a thought leadership series covering nature-related financial disclosures.

  • Delivering a 60-minute introduction to finance for nature ‘anchor’ session broadcast at UNDPs Nature for Life Hub 2022
  • Publishing a 4-part thought leadership series covering:
  • Taskforce on Nature-related Financial Disclosures (TNFD)
  • A Scottish perspective on TCFD and nature
  • Measuring biodiversity
  • Key Challenges for private sector investment

Financing the SDGs

This includes developing a service offering to support family offices and private equity investors align their portfolios with the SDGs and publishing a thought leadership series.

  • Promoting SDG linked financial products to attract new funds
    Publishing, in partnership with UNDP, a thought leadership series covering:
  • Introduction to the SDGs
  • SDG Impact Standards
  • Fixed income
  • Listed equities
  • Banking
  • Reporting and Assurance

Unlocking Islamic finance

This includes working with the high-level working group on green and sustainable sukuk, conducting research on consumer awareness and attitudes towards Islamic finance, create a Tayyib Impact Framework (Sharia compliance plus ESG), and development of a thought leadership series.

  • Collaborating with the High-Level Working Group on Green and Sustainable Sukuk to deliver some of the recommendations made in the report published at the Path to COP28 launch event
  • Leading a 12-month research & development programme to create a Tayyib Impact Framework (Shariah compliance plus ESG)
  • Conducting a pioneering global retail survey looking at consumer awareness and attitudes towards Islamic finance and the SDGs
  • Delivering a 6-part thought leadership series covering:
  • Landscape mapping of climate commitments in GCC
  • Deep dive into UAE (commitments, taxonomy, COP28 targets etc)
  • Tayyib and Islamic impact investing
  • Challenges of IFIs engaging with net zero frameworks and other initiatives
  • Islamic capital markets – opportunity for green sukuk
  • Islamic finance COP28 preview


DIFC Sustainable Finance Catalyst

Launched on COP28's Finance Day in 2023 and building on DIFC’s position as the first global sustainable finance hub in MEASA and as a legacy to COP28, DIFC’s Sustainable Finance Catalyst is set to grow Sustainable finance flows from Dubai to USD100 bn by 2030; help scale sustainable finance from Dubai, enabled by the first AI-driven sustainability knowledge hub; activate a network of strategic partners that will train 1 million sustainability leaders; and grow its sustainability-driven start-up ecosystem 50x by 2030. Read more here

Training and events for COP28


Ethical Finance Global 2023 and SDG Hive.

19 – 21 September 2023. Natwest Group, Edinburgh, UK


DIFC sustainability week.

30 October 2023.

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