Pretoria – As host of the upcoming climate change conference (COP 17), South Africa has a mammoth task of ensuring that all parties to the gathering deliver an acceptable and equitable deal, says International Relations and Cooperation Minister Maite Nkoana-Mashabane.
“As the onus of delivering an acceptable climate change outcome in Durban rests on South Africa… it is crucial that we utilise the next four months to promote the sharing of views and ideas, in an effort to overcome and narrow the divide between developed and developing countries on the expected outcomes of Durban,” she said at a G77 climate meeting in New York.
The gathering in Durban in November this year is regarded as one of the largest United Nations meetings on climate change and is expected to draw heads of state from more than 100 countries.
This week, Nkoana-Mashabane said she was also pleased with the negotiations currently taking place in Bonn, Germany.
“We have been in contact with our delegation in Bonn and we are encouraged to learn that progress is being made in a number of bodies of the UNFCCC. We hope this will give country parties the courage to continue negotiating in a positive spirit,” Nkoana-Mashabane said.
South Africa had also been holding “open-ended” informal consultations in Bonn with all parties and stakeholders to get views on their expectations on the outcome for the Durban conference.
“The response to this initiative has been very positive,” said the minister.
A number of events are expected to take place leading to the Durban gathering, with the first one being the Leaders Dialogue to be held in September in New York and chaired by President Jacob Zuma and President Calderon of Mexico. – BuaNews