AsiaNet 49795

RIO DE JANEIRO, June 22, 2012 (ANTARA/PRNewswire-AsiaNet) --

Qatar's vision for innovative green growth and development took center stage at the Qatar National Pavilion at Rio + 20 UN Conference on Sustainable Development. His Excellency Dr. Saleh Al-Nabit, Secretary General of the General Secretariat for Development Planning (GSDP) set the tone for the days discussions and stressed the importance of Qatar's National Vision 2030: "We return to Rio de Janeiro twenty years later to discuss the challenges of the 21st century. Sustainable development is crucial to Qatar's National Vision 2030, and we are here to showcase how Qatar will fulfill this ambition."

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By combining smart infrastructure, progressive social programs, ambitious education systems and world-class research and development, Qatar's Vision 2030 serves as an example for emerging nations committed to economic diversity, sustainable growth and opportunities for its people. Through the leadership of His Highness the Emir Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa Al Thani, Qatar has committed to investing its resources in sustainable growth and development, building a foundation for long-term prosperity for this independent Gulf state.

"Qatar's National Vision 2030 outlines the strategies for balancing economic growth with social and environmental progress," said Datuk Dr. Richard Leete, the GSDP Social Development Department Director said. "It is important that the public and private sectors move ahead in step, pursuing their goals together."

An exceptionally rapid rise in population -- averaging 15 percent per year between 2004 and 2008 --has generated challenges that cut across all segments of society and infrastructure, Leete explained. Addressing these issues in nations like Qatar requires a comprehensive environmental management system that mitigates the impacts of rapid population growth and the high levels of urbanization in Doha.

"The nation has already made leaps forward in terms of sustainable operations of its key industries," shared Director of Qatar Petroleum's Health, Safety and Environment Regulations and Enforcement Directorate Saif Saeed Al-Naimi. By recovering emissions that were once flared and re-processing those gases in the system, hydrocarbon facilities in Qatar are well on their way to measurable reductions in greenhouse gas emissions. These significant investments in developing new technologies in the field and laboratory are promising returns in high-value services and products for the industry -- a win for Qatar's economic diversification strategy, as well as the environment.

In addition to the progress led by the industrial sector, Qatar's research and development programs are producing technologies and advancements in science that are establishing the Nation as a center of excellence on the most critical problems of our time. "The Qatar Science and Technology Park is engaged in research that ranges from alternative fuels to robotic surgery," said Mohammad Al-Khaldy of QSTP. Not only are these initiatives improving standards of living throughout the world, but they are also diversifying the Nation's economy.

"We are proud to share these examples of Qatar's leadership on sustainable development in Rio," said His Excellency Dr. Saleh Al-Nabit, "This is a collaborative effort to implement a vision that helps our nation continue to take advantage of the opportunities it has for progress while also insuring that the society and environment we live in remains the kind of place we are all proud to call home."

About GSDP

The Qatar General Secretariat for Development Planning (GSDP) sights are set on the long term, pursuing initiatives that make a difference in the lives of Qatar's citizens and people, and that are sustainable over many years. In everything it does, GSDP recognizes the important interdependencies and trade-offs among development goals and constraints and accordingly aims to integrate all national development efforts so that they are mutually reinforcing and sustainable.

GSDP's relevance to Qatar's national development hinges on its ability to consult, involve, convene and influence a whole range of stakeholders and to initiate and guide dialogue on important issues. GSDP is therefore committed to communicating with and engaging stakeholders in order them keep them abreast of development progress and strengthen its partnerships with them, while building understanding of the purpose of the national development strategy and how it will bring tangible benefits for the people of Qatar.

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