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UN, China to Co-organize High-level Event on Climate Change

The United Nations and China will co-organize a high-level meeting on climate change early next month, with a special focus on technology development and transfer, the world body announced on Friday.

UN Undersecretary-General for Economic and Social Affairs Sha Zukang and China's Deputy Permanent Representative to the United Nations Liu Zhenmin briefed member states at the UN Headquarters on the November 7-8 Beijing High-Level Conference on Climate Change: Technology Development and Technology.

"Technology transfer is of enormous importance in tackling climate change," Sha said. "Together with financing technology transfer, it is one of the means of achieving adaptation and mitigation action."

Effective international action on climate change will require progress on the question of technology transfer, which is addressed in the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) and also forms a core aspect of the Bali Action Plan, Sha noted.

"In this context, the conference will provide a forum for open, practical and pragmatic discussions on technology transfer and climate change," Sha said. "The conference will focus on practical options and solutions for overcoming barriers to technology development and transfer."

"We hope it will be an opportunity for member states and other stakeholders engage openly, away from the constraints of the negotiating setting," he said.

Sha said that the aim of the conference is to support the UNFCCC process, particularly the forthcoming UN Climate Change Conference in Poznan, Poland in December 2008.

Calling for "broad, high-level participation from member states, " Sha said that the conference will be opened by Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao and that UNFCCC Executive Secretary Yvo de Boer and former British Prime Minister Tony Blair have confirmed their participation.

In his remarks, Liu said that over the years, the international efforts to develop and transfer clean technologies are lagged behind the needs, and the relevant mechanism and financial support are not yet put in place.

With many countries having divergent views on the issue, communication and dialogue will help countries deepen mutual understanding, find common ground and work together to promote technological development and transfer, Liu said.

"The purpose of the high-level conference is to provide a platform of dialogue for international cooperation in the relevant technological development and transfer," Liu said.

"We hope this conference will help countries form some consensus on development and transfer of technologies for addressing climate change so as to further promote the efforts to address climate change," Liu noted.

(Xinhua News Agency October 5, 2008)

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