Aldar, HSBC ink agreement to secure sustainability-linked loan

Dubai - Dh300 million five-year loan linked to sustainability performance targets.

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Greg Fewer, group chief financial and sustainability officer at Aldar.
Greg Fewer, group chief financial and sustainability officer at Aldar.

A Staff Reporter

Published: Sun 4 Jul 2021, 2:33 PM

Last updated: Sun 4 Jul 2021, 2:34 PM

Aldar Properties has signed a Dh300 million facility with HSBC that links the interest margin payable under the facility to achievement of sustainability targets. The agreement sees Aldar become the first real estate company in the Mena region to enter into this type of financing.

Greg Fewer, group chief financial and sustainability officer at Aldar, said: “We’re proud to be issuing our first sustainability linked loan that reflects how integrated sustainability is within our operations and in particular our best in class treasury function.

“Our financial stakeholders are increasingly factoring sustainability assessments into their portfolio strategies. At Aldar, we believe this shift in capital allocation is a positive force that creates a powerful incentive for companies to up their sustainability game to benefit from these capital flows. As a leader in our market Aldar is ideally positioned to benefit from this trend.”

The innovative five-year term sustainability-linked loan includes a mechanism to adjust Aldar’s interest margin annually in line with achievement of targets on energy and water intensity, waste recycling and worker welfare. These targets, which are aligned with Aldar’s sustainability strategy, were identified to be material to both Aldar and the wider real estate sector. As part of the agreement, Aldar has also committed to investing a fixed amount in one or more qualifying environmental, social and governance (ESG) projects if it does not reach agreed annual targets.

The transaction is structured in alignment with the Sustainability-Linked Loan Principles (SLLP) published by the Loan Market Association (LMA), Asia Pacific Loan Market Association (APLMA), and Loan Syndications & Trading Association (LSTA). The loan will be used for general corporate purposes, including the roll-out of ESG initiatives across the group.

Mohammed Al Marzouqi, Head of Global Banking, HSBC UAE, said: “The real estate sector plays an important role in helping the world tackle climate change, considering up to 70 per cent of emissions in a large city are related to its buildings. By securing the first LMA Sustainability Linked Loan Principles compliant facility in the real estate sector in the MENA region, Aldar not only demonstrates its commitment to addressing these relevant ESG issues in the sector, but also sets an important precedent in the region. This transaction also highlights the strength of our partnership with Aldar as we work together towards building a more sustainable and prosperous future for the UAE.” —

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