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Veteran official back as climate negotiator

By Fu Jing | China Daily | Updated: 2015-04-14 08:03

Beijing has taken a smart decision by retaining a "retired" minister as China's climate change representative, because he knows well the tough negotiators, such as Todd Stern of the United States, and the cards they are likely to play in the run-up to and at the crucial climate change conference in Paris in December.

Xie Zhenhua (65), a retired minister-level veteran who represented China at climate talks for more than eight years, made a surprising comeback when he officially met with a Swedish climate delegation and UN top official last week. Xie, who "retired" as vice-chairman of National Development and Reform Commission, China's top economic planning body, in February, will now work with Zhang Yong, former food and drug safety chief and his successor, until the end of the Paris climate talks.

As China's unofficial "special representative on climate change affairs", Xie and Zhang both met with Jan Eliasson, deputy secretary-general of the UN in Beijing on April 9. Xie even met Asa Romson, Sweden's deputy prime minister and climate minister, last week.

Veteran official back as climate negotiator

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