Qatar’s ongoing efforts to align CSR best practices with the National Vision 2030 will receive a further boost as the 2nd CSR Qatar, the country’s flagship conference for sustainability and Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR Qatar 2014), opens on 1 December 2014 at the Marriott Marquis City Center Doha Hotel.

HE Sheikh Khalifa bin Jassim Al Thani, Chairman of Qatar Chamber of Commerce and Industry, will deliver the opening keynote address at the conference. Director General of Qatar Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Reemi Rohani, said:

Qatar is entering the next stage of its CSR movement, as businesses move beyond philanthropic and promotional CSR to transformative CSR that brings lasting benefits to the society and economy. There is greater understanding of the role of CSR in driving company growth and social reputation, and many businesses today view CSR as an intangible asset in the balance sheet. CSR Qatar 2014 aims to further advance the dialogue on sustainability by providing a platform where stakeholders can come together to share best practices, and hopefully trigger new ideas and insights that will help in uplifting the overall CSR environment in Qatar and aligning it more closely with the National Vision 2030.’

Officially supported by the Qatar Chamber of Commerce and Industry (QCCI), the three-day conference will gather corporate and community leaders from Qatar and across the region who will discuss the role of CSR in supporting the National Vision 2030, the strategies and actions required to enhance stakeholder collaboration and drive adoption of CSR, and ensuring the safety and protecting the rights of workers.

Commenting on the importance of sustainable development and QAPCO’s Gold sponsorship of CSR Qatar 2014, Dr Mohammed Yousef Al Mulla, Vice Chairman and CEO of Qatar Petrochemical Company, said:

At QAPCO, we draw strength from the alignment of our strategy with the Qatar National Vision 2030. Every day, our focus is on ensuring we participate in translating the vision into a reality. Sustainable development is fully embedded in our strategy and drives value and progress throughout the entire company. As a responsible corporate citizen, we believe that contributing to Qatari society and serving our nation is part of our license to operate.’

The first day’s sessions open with a panel discussion on the topic, CSR – More Than Just Charity, where prominent experts will discuss the role of key stakeholders – including the government, corporates, NGOs, universities, and the community – in delivering Qatar’s CSR agenda. Participants include Essa Al Mannai, Executive Director of ROTA (Qatar Foundation); Dr Khalid Abdulnoor Saifeldeen, Chairman of Kulluna Initiative and Hamad Medical Corporation (HMC); Mohammed Hammoudi, General Manager of Cisco; and Hasmig Khoury, Head of Corporate Social Responsibility at Bank Audi, Lebanon. The afternoon session will feature two further panel discussions. Enhancing Stakeholder Collaboration and Sports and CSR.

The first day of the conference will shed the spotlight on a broad spectrum of CSR trends, challenges and opportunities. Key topics of discussion include worker and labor rights; the role of the government in mandating CSR to standardise sustainability across the corporate landscape; building excellence in sustainability; applying international CSR best practices to align with the Qatar National Vision 2030, and more.

Prominent speakers on the first day include Yousef bin Ahmed Al Kuwari, CEO of Qatar Charity; Naim Yazbeck, Country Manager, Microsoft; Alanoud Taleb Al Henzab, Corporate Social Investment Manager at Qatari Diar; Hasmig Khoury, Head of Corporate Social Responsibility at Bank Audi, Lebanon; Mohammed Hammoudi, General Manager of Cisco; HE Ewa Polano, Ambassador of Sweden; Cesar Wazen, Director of Scholarships and Partnerships, Qatar University, and Muna Al Khulaifi, Director, Family Consultant Center.

Winding up the day’s sessions will be a roundtable entitled, The Rising Star, featuring Qatari students and young professionals. Aimed at inculcating the culture of CSR and sustainability among Qatar’s youth, the roundtable will engage participants in a dynamic interactive session and discuss a range of topics relevant to shaping their role in CSR and facilitating their contribution to the sustainable development of Qatar.

The conference’s second day will kick off with a panel discussion on private and public partnerships featuring Ourania Dionysiou, Advisor, Partner Relations at UNICEF, Somaya Al Mutawa, Head of Community Awareness & Development Section at KAHRAMAA Qatar General Electricity & Water Corporation and Mohamed Al Ayed, President and CEO at TRACCS. Keynote speakers on the second day include Zeina Al Azmeh, Assistant Vice President for Communication and Outreach at Qatar University; Mohammed Abu Jbara, CSR Manager at Shell; Karine Kamel, Managing Partner, BridgEgypt; Alexandre Amato, Head of Sustainability at Qatar Green Building Council – Qatar Foundation; Ahmad M. Homssi, Environmental Manager, Q-Chem, and Mohamed Waseem Hemmoudeh, Senior Specialist – Student Financial Services, Student Affairs, Hamad Bin Khalifa University.

The third and final day of the conference is dedicated to workshops.

Taking place from 1 to 3 December 2014, the CSR Qatar 2014 is supported by several prominent organizations in Qatar. Conference partners and sponsors include the Qatar Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Qatari Diar, Qatar Petrochemical Company (QAPCO), Alfardan Group, Qatar Fuel Additives Company Limited (QAFAC), and Microsoft.

CSR Qatar was launched in 2013 with the aim of aligning CSR initiatives with Qatar’s National Vision 2030. The conference provides a dynamic platform for CSR professionals to network with high-level experts from across the region.

For more information, visit the CSR Qatar 2014 website.