According to a report issued this week, The Middle East and North Africa’s (Mena’s) underdeveloped cleantech sector faces major challenges with regards to growth.
The report, Mena’s Cleantech Startups —.
The report also states that “Unlocking the Path to Solving Environmental Challenges, indicates that entrepreneurs feel lack of consumer awareness contributes to slow growth in the sector despite innovative solutions from emerging start-ups”.
There has also been a list of other growth limiting factors which includes; lack of access to markets, few specialised mentors, minimal research and development resources and a small pool of specialised investment sources.
Rania Rostom (GE’s Chief Innovation Officer for the Middle East, North Africa & Turkey) said: “Mena’s demand for energy is set to increase by 114 per cent while per capita availability of water will be cut by half in the region by 2050. Cleantech start-ups can play an effective role in meeting these challenges. Through our partnership with Wamda, we are driving the creation of a local innovation and entrepreneurial ecosystem. The white paper is a great example of how the private sector can collaborate to boost local entrepreneurship, especially in the cleantech sector. “Our focus is to provide market knowledge, as well as networking and mentorship opportunities that will help them take their businesses to the next level of growth. GE’s regional innovation centres and digital industrial technologies will play a key role in supporting these ventures, highlighting our long-term commitment to promoting sustainable development.”
On the Innovative solutions, Habib Haddad (co-founder and CEO of Wamda) added: “Mena is a logical location for cleantech start-ups, given its environmental challenges and growing regional support for entrepreneurship. Despite their tremendous potential for positive change, cleantech start-ups do not receive adequate levels of targeted support, and if left unchecked, it could become a missed opportunity for the region to develop innovative environmental solutions. Through our partnership with GE for the MEMakers initiative, we are hoping to bring a tangible change to the cleantech landscape of the region.”