India won`t be deal-breaker at Copenhagen: Sarkozy
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Last Updated: Saturday, November 28, 2009, 10:11
  
Port of Spain: Sharing India's views, French President Nicolas Sarkozy on Friday said the upcoming Copenhagen meet on climate change should not miss the opportunity to tackle the problem as it would be a "historic failure" and asserted that New Delhi will not be a deal-breaker.

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, who is here for the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM), is not going to Copenhagen where Environment Minister Jairam Ramesh will be representing India at the meet.

"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.

Noting that there was a "tremendous sense of urgency" surrounding the Copenhagen Summit, Sarkozy said, "We can't afford to miss the opportunity. It is imperative that heads of state and government are present on December 18-19 in Copenhagen."

His views 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.

"We need to get commitments with binding decisions," Sarkozy said, adding the industrial and emerging countries like Brazil must commit to a 50 percent carbon reduction by 2050.

"We must come up with hard and fast figures," the French President said, contending that seven to eight binding decisions will have to be taken at Copenhagen.

"We have to be together at some time. If no decision is taken in Copenhagen, it will be a historic failure... We either take all the decisions or none," he added.

Sarkozy said that India would "never stand in the way of agreements at Copenhagen."

The French President also pitched for extension of financial support immediately to developing nations to fight climate change, again reflecting the views of India.

"We must help them (developing countries) financially to face up to the challenge of global warming," he said.

Sarkozy said he was in agreement with British Prime Minister Gordon Brown regarding the suggestion that as soon as possible after Copenhagen, "we mobilise USD 10 billion of public money" to pump into emerging countries, with 20 percent earmarked for combating deforestation. "This would be over three-year period immediate financing."

Asked about development versus climate change, the President said, "Nobody should have to choose between growth and protecting the environment. We need sustainable growth.” That is what the leaders will be calling for in Copenhagen, he said. "The only choice is sustainable growth and carbon free growth."

Addressing the pessimism surrounding the Copenhagen summit, he said: "During the last three days, things have started to shift. We have moved into an active negotiation stage."

PTI


First Published: Saturday, November 28, 2009, 10:11


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