Dubai’s commitment to energy efficiency opens new doors of business opportunities

Last week saw the announcement of the first award under the Dubai Regulatory and Supervisory Bureau’s accreditation scheme for Energy Service Companies (ESCOs) which was scooped by MAF Dalkia.

Under the Green Economy for Sustainable Development initiative of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of UAE and Ruler of Dubai, Dubai has set a target of increasing energy efficiency by 30% by 2030, with annual incremental targets from 2015. With existing commercial and residential buildings responsible for 70% of the Emirate’s energy use, focus is on retrofitting existing building stock as the most prudent way to meet targets.

To facilitate this, DEWA launched Etihad ESCO; a ‘Super ESCO’ tasked with creating and overseeing an energy performance contracting market by developing and delivering energy efficiency projects targeting 30,000 buildings. Unlike traditional facilities management models, these projects become profitable for contractors only once savings are made, ensuring that the focus is firmly on reducing usage wherever possible.

According to DEWA’s announcement, Etihad ESCO can also provide access to initial project finance for companies looking to undertake the work. A factor crucial to the success of the project will be ensuring buy-in from the private sector. Landlords may have reservations due to the disruption such work may cause, particularly if the benefits are not immediately clear. To encourage participation and reduce, as far as possible, the need for legislation to enforce the works, the first contracts put out to tender were those of the DEWA buildings themselves, with other government buildings to follow to act as real-world examples of the long term savings the work will bring.

By attracting the world’s best of breed firms to carry out this work to the highest standard, this will demonstrate Dubai’s desire to position itself as a model of sustainability as it further diversifies its economy from the traditional petro carbon base.

With our close association with the Foreign Investment Development Agency (Dubai FDI), The Links Group is well positioned to assist firms looking to share their expertise and contribute in shaping a sustainable future for the UAE.

For more information about Etihad ESCO, please check this article:


Article by Links Group on May 4th 2014