Indias stand on climate change gets Sarkozy stamp

Written by Press Trust of India | Port of Spain | Updated: Nov 30 2009, 04:11am hrs
Indias stand on climate change got a major boost on Saturday with French President Nicolas Sarkozy asserting that New Delhi will not be a deal-breaker at the upcoming Copenhagen meet on climate change. Sarkozy also pitched for extension of financial support immediately to developing nations to fight climate change, a position long maintained by India and opposed by the developed countries, especially the US.

Sarkozy, who held a luncheon meeting with Prime Minister Manmohan Singh here and discussed climate change, said he was fully confident that the latter would attend the Copenhagen Summit being held on December 18.

As of now, Singh is not scheduled to attend the Copenhagen meeting, where India is to be represented by environment minister Jairam Ramesh.

India has nothing to lose and everything to gain by being in Copenhagen. If India is to be heard, it needs to be present, Sarkozy said addressing a press conference here.

The French Presidents remarks are significant since they reflect those of India which has been insisting that the efforts to take some decision should not be given up and some results must be achieved at the upcoming meeting.

Earlier, Prime Minister Manmohan Singhs address at the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meet (CHOGM) also echoed similar views as he pushed for a legally binding substantive outcome at the Copenhagen meet, saying India is willing to sign on an ambitious global target for emission reduction or limiting temperature increase if it is accompanied by an equitable burden-sharing paradigm. He denounced attempts by some developed nations to junk the Kyoto Protocol on greenhouse gas emissions and said climate change is becoming the pretext for pursuing protectionist policies under a green label which would be rejected by India and other developing nations.

Singh disapproved of attempts by some developed countries to lower expectations from the December Summit, saying the negotiations should not be preempted and effort should be made to achieve as much convergence as possible.

Singh also met his UK counterpart Gordon Brown separately and told him India has a major stake in the Copenhagen meet and would like to see a balanced, ambitious and equitable outcome from it.