Statement on behalf of the Group of 77 and China by Ambassador Nozipho Mxakato-Diseko, Chair of the Group of 77 and China, at the Opening Plenary of the Ad Hoc Working Group on the Durban Platform (ADP-8), Geneva, Switzerland, 8 February 2015
Excellencies, Distinguished representatives, Ladies and gentlemen,
1. I have the honour to deliver this statement on behalf of the Group of 77 and China. First of all, we wish to congratulate you on your election as our Co-Chairs. I also wish to thank the Government of Switzerland for hosting this important meeting.
2. The Group wishes to express its full support toward helping the Co-Chairs guide us to a successful outcome to these negotiations.
3. The Group of 77 and China represents about 85% of the world’s population. Our peoples suffer the effects of climate change first hand. Climate change threatens not only the development prospects of developing countries and their achievement of sustainable development but also the very existence and survival of countries, societies and the ecosystems of our Mother Earth.
4. You can therefore be assured of the group’s commitment to this process as we recognise the importance of a successful outcome in Paris. It is our expectation that the process leading up to Paris should be open, transparent, inclusive, Party-driven and consensus-building in order to arrive at a comprehensive, balanced and equitable outcome.
5. More than two-thirds of the UNFCCC Parties are members of our Group. The Group also encompasses at least 10 sub-groups and our strength emanates from this diversity. There can be no meaningful and legitimate agreement if the concerns of the Group of 77 and China are not taken into account.
6. We would like to recall that the objective of the ADP is to enhance action and to promote the full and effective and sustained implementation of the Convention through the strengthening of the multilateral rules-based regime under the Convention. Any attempts to redefine, rewrite, renegotiate or reinterpret the Convention and its principles and provisions that would result in a watering down or weakening of the Convention will not be acceptable and will only complicate and delay the process. The tasks of the ADP session here in Geneva are very clear in light of the decisions we have all committed ourselves to since Durban. Before turning to the key issues to be addressed in the agreement, we note that the current Elements paper annexed to the Lima decision was not, due to time limitations, fully negotiated in Lima. This Elements paper is an expression of multiple views which must be considered in light of the decisions adopted in Lima.
7. We agreed on timelines for our work, namely that we need to complete the work of the ADP as early as possible in order to adopt a protocol, another legal instrument or an agreed outcome with legal force under the Convention applicable to all Parties at the Paris COP. We also agreed that the ADP must make available a negotiating text before May 2015. We therefore support your determination to deliver a draft negotiating text by Friday.
8. In order to deliver on this task, trust and mutual reassurances from all Parties, as well as the necessary political will and determination to find solutions for key issues, are essential. Any streamlining of the options should be based on consensus among Parties collectively and constructively, with Parties’ views to be reflected in a balanced and comprehensive manner in the negotiating text.
9. Under Workstream I, the Group reiterates that the 2015 agreement must be under the Convention, applicable to all Parties and based on its principles and provisions, in particular the principles of equity and common but differentiated responsibilities and respective capabilities. Any agreement without equity and CBDR&RC is not in accordance with the Convention.
10. We also decided that the 2015 agreement must be comprehensive in dealing with all the agreed elements, inter alia mitigation, adaptation, loss and damage, finance, technology development and transfer, capacity building and transparency of action and support required from developed to developing countries, in a balanced manner. The Group also reiterates the crucial importance of appropriately, effectively and meaningfully addressing adaptation, finance and the need to secure progress in addressing the issue of loss and damage in the 2015 agreement. Other issues such as the adverse impacts of response measures and anchoring specific implementation mechanisms and frameworks in the 2015 Agreement should be addressed. The 2015 outcome should provide for enhanced financial and technological support from developed to developing countries for ambitious mitigation and adaptation actions after 2020, especially to those developing countries that are particular vulnerable to the adverse effects of climate change. These are fundamental prerequisites for enabling developing countries’ actions to address climate change and its impacts.
11. The Group of 77 and China regards Workstream II on pre-2020 ambition as an integral part of the ADP that has direct bearing on the successful adoption of the 2015 agreement. The work of Workstream II should continue until the pre-2020 ambition gap is closed. Enhanced pre-2020 ambition will not only provide a strong basis for post-2020 cooperation, but is also necessary to avoid higher costs and risks associated with adaptation and mitigation in the long run.
12. Through Workstream II, we must work with the objective that countries increase mitigation ambition in the pre-2020 period, and developed countries must take the lead, through enhanced actions, increasing emission reduction targets to at least 40% below 1990 levels by 2020, and the level of ambition on providing finance, technology and capacity-building support to assist developing country Parties in achieving the pledges that they have made. Workstream II is essentially about accelerating the implementation of existing commitments and ways to promote enhanced ambition. The speedy ratification of the Doha Amendment would be an important signal to the world that Parties are committed to closing the pre-2020 ambition gap. Scaling up climate finance towards the goal of US$100 billion by 2020 will also provide the resources required by developing countries to enhance pre-2020 mitigation and adaptation actions.
13. As the primary bearers of the impacts of climate change, who have been asked to do so much and have made many concessions in these negotiations through the years, the Group looks forward to see what our partners are prepared to bring to the table. We have heard much talk of action outside this process, now we need all country Parties to bring their positive intentions to this process to strengthen the multilateral rules-based system under the Convention.
In closing, Co-Chairs,
14. As you yourselves have pointed out, time is not on our side. The Group therefore stands ready to work constructively with you and with our negotiating partners. We commit to put our collective shoulder to the wheel to deliver on our task this week as a prelude to the successful completion of our work in Paris.