2nd commitment period still top priority

Updated: 2011-12-07 08:50


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DURBAN, South Africa - Though China has expressed its willingness to talk on legally-binding emission cut pledge after year 2020, the second commitment period of the Kyoto Protocol remains the top priority of the United Nations climate conference in Durban, South Africa, a senior Chinese diplomat told Xinhua on Tuesday.

"We insist that the most important topic at Durban conference remains new emission pledges of developed countries during year 2012-2020, namely the second commitment period, " Liu Zhenmin, assistant minister of foreign affairs of China and first vice head of the Chinese delegation, told Xinhua.

Amid the minister-level segment of the Durban climate conference scheduled for Tuesday afternoon, Liu noted that China's post-2020 emission commitment is "a newly emerging issue."

"We have not yet fulfilled the Bali Roadmap, which was endorsed by the international community in 2007. That means we should at first finish what has begun,"Liu said.

This stance is not only held China, but its BASIC partners Brazil, India and South Africa, other developing countries and even some developed countries, according to Liu.

Liu also hoped some developed countries would return to the track of the Kyoto Protocol, and push the conference to a fair, balanced and progressive outcome together with developing nations.

"We hope that all developed countries should adhere to the second commitment arrangements of the Kyoto Protocol," Liu noted.

Commenting on a report that Canadian Environment Minister Peter Kent refused to renew the Kyoto commitment, Liu said, "Canada and other developed economies should take their responsibilities with their abilities, and should respond to the voices of the international community."

Looking forward to the possible outcome of Durban conference, Liu said he is "quite confident" of a progressive result.

"I believe that an arrangement pleasing all parties is possible, that will include the second commitment period issue and the Green Climate Fund issue, which is most developing countries' concern," he said.