INVESTMED Access to Finance Workshop 2: Sustainable Finance and Strategies for Sustainable Entrepreneurship

Sustainable entrepreneurship is a key driver for economic growth and prosperity in the MENA region. Coupled with the ongoing intersecting crises such as climate change, youth unemployment, pollution etc., businesses in the green, blue, and cultural and creative industries have the potential to be a catalyst for change.

However, it is well understood that MSMEs and small enterprises struggle to access finance. Despite that, there are many available sources, such as grants from government agencies, non-profit organisations, and even private foundations, socially responsible banks and credit unions offering loans or lines of credit to entrepreneurs who meet certain criteria related to sustainability and social responsibility.

In this workshop, strategies for sustainable finance for start-ups are explored, such as the importance of environmental, social and governance factors, and the specifics of alternative sources of finance for CCI and blue and green businesses are discussed. This workshop was organised by project partner, the Euro-Mediterranean Economists Association (EMEA) under the INVESTMED project.

The panellists were: 

Gian-Luca Gasparini, Capacity Building Manager & Project Manager at FEBEA, the European Federation of Ethical and Alternative Banks and Financier Members

Giorgio Mosangini, Team Leader – Green Entrepreneurship & Civil Society, MedWaves

Dr. Mohamed Abbas, Associate Director and Head of Business Incubators Program a Nile Preneurs, , a Central Bank of Egypt Initiative based at Nile University

Johanna von Toggenburg, Lebanon Country Manager at cewas Middle East

The session was moderated by Kirsty Fairhurst, Communication and Research Officer at EMEA.