SCIO briefing on China's Policies and Actions for Addressing Climate Change (2018)

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Xie Zhenhua, China’s Special Representative on Climate Change

Li Gao, Director-General of Climate Change in the Ministry of Ecology and Environment

Xi Yanchun, spokeswoman of the State Council Information Office

Nov. 26, 2018

Xi Yanchun:

Good morning, ladies and gentlemen. Welcome to this press conference. The 2018 United Nations Climate Change Conference will soon open in Poland. Today, the document on "China's Policies and Actions for Addressing Climate Change (2018)" was officially published. To help you gain a better understanding of the related situation, we are pleased to have Mr. Xie Zhenhua, China's Special Representative on Climate Change, here to introduce the report and answer your questions. We also have with us Mr. Li Gao, Director-General of Climate Change in the Ministry of Ecology and Environment. Now, I give the floor to Mr. Xie.

Xie Zhenhua:

Welcome to the press conference on China's Policies and Actions for Addressing Climate Change (2018). It is customary to hold such a press conference every year before the Climate Change Conference, in which we report to the public, especially the international community, on the annual progress, achievements and problems of China's policies and actions for addressing climate change. It demonstrates that China's policies and actions are completely open and transparent in this field.

This year's Conference of the Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change will be held in Katowice, Poland. It is the 24th COP and is internationally known as Katowice Climate Change Conference. Today's briefing will focus on the latest progress and major achievements of our country's response to climate change since 2017. These include climate change mitigation and adaptation, local action, broad societal participation, institutional development, improvements of basic capabilities, active participation in international negotiations and strengthening of international exchanges and cooperation. We will demonstrate the policies, actions and results of our country's response to climate change in various sectors, localities and fields.

As we all know, the Chinese government attaches great importance to tackling climate change, and regards the promotion of green and low-carbon development as an important part of the construction of an ecological civilization and a major opportunity to accelerate the transformation of economic development and adjust the existing economic structure. Since 2017, China has made positive progress in mitigating climate change, adapting to climate change, improving institutions, strengthening capacity building, encouraging local action, and raising public awareness.

In accordance with the Chinese government's work plans and specific measures for institutional reform this year, the responsibilities for addressing climate change and emission reduction have been transferred to the newly-established Ministry of Ecology and Environment. During the National Conference on Ecological and Environmental Protection held in May this year, President Xi Jinping stressed that we will implement a national strategy for actively addressing climate change. This will include advancing and guiding the establishment of a global climate governance system featuring fairness, rationality and win-win cooperation. We will also honor the image of China as a responsible country, and endorse the building of a community with a shared future for mankind. We will act with firm resolve to implement President Xi's instructions, fully enacting the national strategy for addressing climate change. China will proactively participate and take the lead in global climate governance, and play a greater role in dealing with climate change in high-quality development, promoting ecological progress, and tackling environmental pollution. 

The Chinese government has always proactively and constructively participated in international negotiations on climate change, and adheres to the principles of the UNFCCC. China upholds the principles of common but differentiated responsibilities and respective capabilities, and works with all parties to promote global climate governance. We have continuously strengthened dialogues and exchanges with various parties and carried out pragmatic cooperation on climate change. While promoting South-South cooperation on climate change, we have provided vigorous support to developing countries in enhancing their capability to adapt to climate change. Our efforts and approaches have been highly praised by the international community and are widely welcomed by developing countries.

This week's United Nations Climate Change Conference in Katowice, Poland, signifies a critical juncture in the global climate governance process. We hope that the General Assembly will complete the negotiations on the implementation of the Paris Agreement as scheduled. We must properly address the financial problems, and send a positive message to the international community to implement the Paris Agreement, promote green and low-carbon industrial development, and build a community with a shared future for mankind. We will continue to play an active and constructive role in working with all parties to promote the success of the conference in Katowice.

Today we are here to announce the release of this report. Now let's get to the Q&A session, in which Mr. Li Gao and I would like to take your questions. Thank you.

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