Egypt's FM hands over COP presidency to UAE at inaugural session

Ahram Online , Thursday 30 Nov 2023

Marking the official inauguration of the 28th session of the United Nations Climate Summit (COP28), Egypt's Foreign Minister Sameh Shoukry, president-designate of the COP27, handed over on Thursday the presidency of the annual summit to the UAE's Sultan Al-Jaber.

Egypt s Minister of Foreign Affairs Sameh Shoukry
Egypt s Minister of Foreign Affairs Sameh Shoukry


Addressing the gathering, Shoukry recalled the challenging international circumstances at the time of the COP27 summit, including the repercussions of the COVID-19 pandemic and the Russia-Ukraine war.

The Sharm El-Sheikh summit urged the implementation of the long sought-after climate action, said Shoukry, highlighting the steps agreed upon last year.

The COP27 concluded with a landmark deal on the establishment of the Loss and Damage Fund, the launch of the Just Transition Action Programme, and the consensus on the Mitigation Action Program. 

The Loss and Damage Fund was launched during the COP28 sessions on Thursday, highly sought after by vulnerable nations devastated by natural disasters resulting from global warming.

Shoukry added that the COP27 summit also called for reforming international financial institutions, advocated for more reliance on renewable energy, and saw consensus related to water, oceans, and forests issues.

Egypt’s top diplomat highlighted the “worrying” climate indicators -- a reference to the declining climate finance of developed countries despite the growing costs incurred by developing countries in their fight against climate challenges.

He expressed concern about the expansion of fossil fuel exploration and production, especially coal, in countries that had previously committed to gradually reducing or eliminating its use.

Egypt’s President Abdel-Fattah El-Sisi is heading to the UAE to participate in the presidential segment of COP28.

The summit is expected to make headway on the issue of reducing emissions. Some 70,000 people are expected to attend.

COP28 is taking place from 30 November to 12 December.

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