ABU DHABI, August 1, 2023 (WAM) – Marking a pivotal juncture in the climate agenda, the COP28 Presidency and the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) have formally executed the Host Country Agreement. This accord stands as a testament to their united dedication toward fostering inclusivity and transparency, resonating as a powerful call for solidarity and transformative advancement at COP28.
The distinguished signatories of this historic agreement are Dr. Sultan bin Ahmed Al Jaber, Minister of Industry and Advanced Technology and COP28 President-Designate, and UNFCCC Executive Secretary Simon Stiell. This noteworthy event took place during a significant meeting in Abu Dhabi.
The Host Country Agreement lays the essential legal foundation for this year’s UN climate summit, providing the pivotal framework for orchestrating its proceedings.
Subsequent to this significant signing, a joint communiqué was issued, underscoring the paramount significance of inclusivity, transparency, and mutual respect. These core values, integral to the COP process, resonate as catalysts for unity and an impetus for more audacious climate action.
Dr. Al Jaber, in his capacity as COP28 President-Designate, accentuated the pivotal role of inclusivity within the COP28 Presidency’s roadmap. He affirmed, “The strategic framework of COP28 revolves around four fundamental pillars: expediting the energy transition, rectifying climate finance, prioritizing the well-being of individuals and their livelihoods, and most crucially, fostering complete inclusivity. Our Presidency staunchly believes that inclusivity serves as a cornerstone, propelling transformative progress across the climate agenda. By transcending our differences and fostering collaboration, we can elevate our collective aspirations and steer progress toward realizing the crucial 1.5°C goal.”
Stiell echoed the UNFCCC’s resolute commitment to upholding the essence of UN values throughout COPs, while ensuring the resounding voices of those disproportionately impacted by climate change reverberate through prominent leadership roles. He affirmed, “As guardians of this process, the secretariat is unwaveringly dedicated to assisting Parties in realizing their climate commitments, including those under the Paris Agreement. To propel climate action and elevate ambition, we are unswervingly committed to upholding UN values during COPs. Furthermore, we are diligently ensuring that the voices of youth, women, local communities, Indigenous Peoples, and those most affected by climate change resonate prominently within the process.”
Consistent with UNFCCC principles and steadfast adherence to international human rights norms, provisions have been set in place to allow climate activists to assemble peacefully, providing them a platform to express their views.
The joint commitment of the COP28 Presidency and the UNFCCC underscores their determination to heighten inclusivity during COP28. In this context, their statement calls for escalated participation and meaningful engagement of youth, women, local communities, and Indigenous Peoples. This aspiration permeates their involvement within Party and observer delegations, policy formulation, and proactive participation throughout COP28’s unfolding journey.
Complete inclusivity stands as a cornerstone among the four focal areas that will underscore COP28’s endeavors. The other three pillars encompass expediting the energy transition, addressing climate finance challenges, and centering on the well-being and livelihoods of all stakeholders.