Why sustainability must be a top priority for UAE organisations
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Why sustainability must be a top priority for UAE organisations

Why sustainability must be a top priority for UAE organisations

Epson’s EMEAR president and CEO, Yoshiro Nagafusa shares their roadmap towards sustainable transformation through technology innovation

Zubina Ahmed

What is the importance of sustainability for organisations in today’s time?
Sustainability is a growing priority in the Middle East, especially within the UAE, which has taken several significant steps to deliver on climate action including financing clean energy projects and becoming the first nation to commit to net zero emissions by 2050.

Sustainability is not just important for the environment, but also plays a key role in any organisation’s efforts to meet the demands of its consumers. According to the results of an Epson survey in 2020, 94 per cent of millennials in the Middle East place a high value on environmental and social issues and the majority of employees in the UAE (90 per cent) believe that the use of green technology will be important in improving the environmental and social impact of businesses . It is now up to organisations to take sustainability into consideration when planning for the future and to address the importance people place on protecting the environment.

Businesses using sustainable technologies will not only help innovate but also reduce energy consumption, cost and carbon emissions in the long term. For instance, Epson’s heat-free business inkjet printers can cut power consumption and CO2 emissions by up to 83 per cent compared to lasers , as well as reduced used consumables by 96 per cent . As businesses in the Middle East begin to look at how they can reduce their own impact on the environment, it’s useful to remember that small steps can make a big difference. A simple switch from laser printers to inkjets can be a quick and straightforward step to saving energy, CO2 emissions and reducing waste, while also saving money and time.

How has your organisation supported encouraging a green environment?
Sustainability is a key mandate for us as an organisation and something we have supported for many years. In 2021, we committed to becoming carbon negative and underground resource free by 2050. In addition, we are committed to investing ¥100bn (around Dhs3.2bn) into sustainable technology innovation. This investment aims to decarbonise and close resource loops, maximising resource use internally. Externally, Epson innovation will reduce the environmental impact of customers and develop new products that are inherently sustainable.

Last year we started a partnership with National Geographic, helping to raise awareness around how conserving heat is a great way to minimise our impact on the environment. Lowering energy consumption will reduce greenhouse gas emissions and help us slow permafrost thaw in the arctic.

What has been your growth in terms of employees and sales in 2021?
We have been expanding our presence and over the past couple of years, we have had some exciting opportunities to innovate and grow, including promising projects with key strategic partners and customers in the region. In the UAE, we expanded and increased our workforce by 37 per cent in 2021 to meet our customer demands and grow the brand further in the region.

What are your plans for the year 2022 and forward?
We made major commitments towards sustainability in 2021 to ensure our people, technology, operations, supply chain and organisational structure are all focused on reducing the environmental impact. Looking ahead, our focus will be on connecting businesses and customers to the very best sustainable technology solutions that will not only save them money, but also contribute to their sustainability goals.

By 2023, we are committed to ensuring to reduce emissions to align with the 1.5 degree warming target and achieve 100 per cent renewable energy use across all group operations.

In addition, we are looking to target reductions in direct (19 per cent) and indirect (44 per cent) emissions by 2025; to meet the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals by 2030.

Read: Epson names new head of marketing services for Middle East and Africa

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