GCC countries can save almost $138 billion by 2030 if they adopt a circular economic model, corresponding to nearly 1% of the region’s cumulative GDP between 2020 and 2030, according to new research.
The report, published at the World Government Summit, claimed that under the prevalent linear economic model, the region is depleting its resources at an accelerated rate, generating unprecedented waste and emissions that are causing enormous social, economic and environmental damage.
It said a circular economy is a holistic solution that seeks to enhance the value and productivity of material resources and minimize any value leakage in order to have a positive economic and environmental effect.
The report, developed in collaboration with the World Government Summit and the Ideation Centre, the think tank for Strategy& Middle East, said the GCC should target its construction sector which produces 35% to 40% of the waste in the region, compared to 25% to 30% in the EU, leading to potential benefits of more than $23 billion between 2020 and 2030.
It added that considerable economic, social, and environmental value can be generated through a circular model in mobility by reducing congestion, traffic accidents, and fuel consumption, along with the costs associated with them. A circular mobility model could generate cumulative benefits in the GCC of $69 billion from 2020 to 2030.
Vehicle sharing, would reduce the number of personal car journeys and electric vehicles would cut fuel consumption significantly, it noted.
The research also said GCC consumers exhibit wasteful behaviour in their consumption of electricity, water, and food. Boosting circularity within households could generate cumulative benefits of $46 billion between 2020 and 2030.
The report said the Gulf region must optimise the consumption of finite resources by sourcing renewable materials, designing products that can be disassembled, reused, repaired, and/or upcycled, and using resources efficiently.
The report also recommends refurbishing and remanufacturing products, recovering by-products from the manufacturing process and reintroducing them into the production cycle and retrieving discarded materials after consumption and reusing them for new products.
Source: Arabian Business