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8th Meeting of the Commission on Sustainable Development
New York, USA; 24 April - 05 May, 2000
 

 

Thursday, 27 April: High-Level Segment draws to a close
Friday, 28 April: High-Level Informal Consultations on Climate Change

Photo : Jan Pronk, Minister of Housing, Spatial Planning and the Environment, the Netherlands, and Michael Zammit Cutajar, Executive Secretary, UNFCCC, at a signing ceremony for COP-6 or the World Conference on Climate Change to be held in the Netherlands in November

Click here for the following side events: (click below for IISD/CDG side event)


 

 
 
High-Level Informal Consultations on Climate Change
All of the key UNFCCC Parties were invited to take part in high- level discussions on the Kyoto Protocol in New York on Friday. The discussions reflected a determination to do all that is necessary to achieve early ratification, even if this means settling for a less than perfect deal by Rio+10 in 2002. Capacity building is emerging as a key component of the choreography that must be put in place to ensure that the prospect of universal participation appears somewhere on the negotiating table. Another critical issue is the nuclear question: both its qualification as a "CDM-able" technology and its role in Annex l countries' "sustainable" energy mix. A vocal Middle Eastern party to the UNFCCC led the assault on the "immorality" of substituting nuclear power for fossil fuels.

Jan Pronk, Minister of Housing, Spatial Planning and the Environment, the Netherlands, and Michael Zammit Cutajar, Executive Secretary, UNFCCC, (above left); Zammit Cutajar, and COP-5 President Jan Szyzsko, Poland (above right)

Bureau members (right)


High-Level Segment on Finance and Investment

CSD-8 Chair Juan Mayr closes the High-Level Segment
High-Level Segment on Finance and Investment
Under-Secretary-General for Economic and Social Affairs Nitin Desai with Colombian delegates and Chair Mayr
Konrad von Moltke, Senior Fellow, International Institute for Sustainable Development (IISD) recommended, inter alia: international discipline for financial markets, ensuring a balance between investor rights and public obligations in a non-discriminatory manner; more constructive use of regional economic agreements; including investment provisions in multilateral environmental agreements (MEAs); and pursuing this debate in the CSD

Jose Antonio Ocampo, Executive Sectretary, Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (ECLAC), recommended, inter alia: international cooperation to meet ODA targets; developing criteria for FDI; directing FDI to clean energy projects; improving cooperation between finance and environmental ministries; and strengthening public institutions.

Jos Socrates Carvalho Pinto de Sousa (Portugal), on behalf of the EU, emphasized: the importance of domestic resources as the main source of financing; greater consideration of international private financial flows; the need for a stable, predictable and transparent investment climate; the need to reverse declining ODA and improve its quality through more efficient delivery, improved allocation and better coordination; the role of the GEF; and implementation of financing pledges for Heavily Indebted Poor Countries (HIPCs).

Hassan Adamu, Nigerian Environment Minister, for the G-77/China, urged donor countries to cancel or substantially reduce the debt burden and to meet their Agenda 21 financial commitments.
Satu Hassi, Minister of the Environment and Development and Development Cooperation (Finland), underlined the importance of the quality of ODA and the need for developing countries to work on sustainable development strategies.
George Foulkes, Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for International Development (United Kingdom) raised questions about the High-Level dialogue exercise and called for careful consideration of the CSD's future arrangements to ensure that the Commission adds value to the debate on finance and investment. On ODA, he called for consideration of developing country spending to ensure prioritization of the social sector and the environment.

Jan Trojborg, Minister for Development Cooperation (Denmark) called for consideration of financing for sustainable development at the Financing for Development and Rio+10 conferences, and highlighted the role of the GEF. HE discussed the considerable progress made in securing funds for the uncovered multilateral costs of the enhanced HIPC initiative and said he was seeking an additional Danish contribution of 19 million US dollars to the HIPC Trust Fund in the World Bank

Mostafa Tolba speaking on behalf of Egypt underlined the importance of defining concepts such as good governance. Chair Mayr supported Egypt's concerns about the need for common understanding among participants in the High-Level Segment. Responding to a question from Egypt, Konrad von Moltke noted the distinct characteristics required for investment disciplines, as investors become 'economic citizens' and acquire rights in host countries.
T.R. Baalu, Minister of Environment and Forests, India, lamented the unaffordable cost of technology transfer.
Kenya said that poverty eradication requires sound national and international macro-economic policies, and called for deeper and broader debt relief.

The Philippines: Governor J. Antonio Leviste, Board of Investments, Undersecretary Crisanto Collado, Department of Agriculture, and Undersecretary Jeremias Paul, Department of Finance

The Philippines called for a mechanism allowing the active participation of finance ministers and officials.


High-Level Segment on Globalization and Trade

Delegates watched a videotaped address to the CSD from Michael Moore, Director-General of the WTO.  Moore suggested that the WTO may contribute to sustainable development through: trade agreements that provide scope for pursuing environmental objectives that do not trade-discriminatory; activities of the WTO Committee on Trade and Environment; and the introduction of fresh initiatives on poverty, for example, addressing agricultural trade barriers.

Martin Khor, Director, Third World Network recommended: rapid reduction and elimination of developed countries' export subsidies; applying the principle of common but differentiated responsibilities; addressing problems arising from the TRIPs agreement; overhauling the WTO decision-making system and Secretariat prior to the pursuit of new issues; and increasing the CSD's capacity to act as an alternative forum for the discussion of trade, development and the environment.
John Currie, Director-General of Environment, European Commission, reiterated its commitment to duty and quota-free access for essentially all exports from less-developed countries; recommended that MEAs and WTO agreements have equal status; called for clarity on the relationship between trade rules and the Rio principles (notably the precautionary principle); encouraged the development and use of sustainability impact assessments (SIAs); and advocated enhanced international cooperation.
Nigeria, for the G-77/China, called on developed countries to: improve market access to developing country exports; assist developing countries to benefit from FDI and ODA, especially in promoting environmentally sound technologies; and promote the participation of developing countries in the trade decision-making process.
Klaus Topfer, UNEP Executive Director summarized key points of importance. Namely, capacity building joint initiatives with UNCTAD for concrete benefits to developing countries; assessment of the effects of trade globalization (see side event on Sustainable Assessment); multilateral environmental agreements (MEAs) on building relationships with the WTO; and principles such as the Precautionary Principle (POPs) and Advanced Informed Agreement (Biosafety Protocol), and most of all, how to translate trade liberalization into the eradication of the most toxic disease : poverty.

Ecuador (left) said increased equity and fairness was needed to build trust and supported the use of sustainability reviews in trade negotiations, noting the recent WWF workshop in Quito, Ecuador. Cameroon (right) called on the international community to guarantee prices for certain forest products, in order to protect forests.


David Hale (United States), welcomed the spirit of dialogue, observing that economically successful trade practices must be environmentally sound, fair, just, and contribute to poverty eradication. He suggested a focus on: tackling poverty alongside health, labor, food and land issues; and on good governance, taking the environmental impact of decisions into account in decision-making. He advocated win-win approaches such as the CDM proposed under the Kyoto Protocol.
Honduras emphasized that trust in national processes is a prerequisite to trust in international processes, highlighting the importance of transparency and the globalization of solidarity.
Dick Balhorn, Department of Foreign Affairs and International Trade (Canada), observed a lack of coherence in national positions adopted at different negotiations, including those on the Biosafety Protocol and at the WTO, and said that coherence must first be established at the national level. He commended UNEP's work on trade and environment agreements and expressed frustration that it was not a joint effort involving the WTO. On ambitions for Rio+10, CANADA suggested the production of guidelines to advance understanding of the conditions where trade and environment policies can be mutually supportive.

The Indigenous Peoples' Caucus highlighted problems caused by trade and investment liberalization.

The International Center for Trade and Sustainable Development (ICTSD) highlighted the lack of clear policy in the multilateral trade system.



ENB Summary of Ad Hoc Open-Ended Intergovernmental Group of Experts on Energy and Sustainable Development
CSD-8 Intersessionals
Linkages CSD page
UN - CSD website with official documents 
ENB's "Introduction to CSD"

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