As US retreats, European Union and China seek climate leadership at summit

Posted June 02, 2017

This was announced by German Chancellor Angela Merkel and Chinese Premier Li Keqiang in a joint media briefing after talks in Berlin today.

Speaking in Berlin Thursday about the Paris climate change accord, he said that "China in recent years has stayed true to its commitment".

World leaders pledged Thursday to keep up the fight against global warming and urged Donald Trump to be part of that effort, hours before the USA president was due to announce whether he would pull out of the Paris climate accord.

She added: "But from that grows a special responsibility for both countries - for Germany and China - in all global issues - for example for climate protection, for the prevention of violent conflicts or in worldwide trade policy".

Other European leaders issued more explicit appeals to the USA government not to abandon global measures against climate change.

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Russian Federation joined the chorus, saying that the deal will be less effective without its key participants.

In Brussels, he plans to jointly chair the nineteenth meeting of Chinese and EU leaders with the Presidents of the European Council Donald Tusk and the European Commission Jean-Claude Juncker.

But since the G7 summit, Merkel and other senior German politicians have signalled that they do not see a Trump-led USA as a reliable partner on a host of issues from free trade to climate change.

While he did not mention the United States or Donald Trump, Mr Li's comments were clearly addressed to Washington.

"We will continue to lobby the Americans and the White House to show the leadership they have shown in the past on reducing CO2, " he said.

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Later on Thursday, Li will travel to Brussels for the annual EU-China summit, where he will meet top EU officials to discuss issues including trade, greenhouse gas emissions and North Korea's missile tests.

The Chinese premier will travel to Brussels to meet with European Union officialslater on Thursday, where he is expected to discuss issues such as climate policy, trade and North Korea.

The joint statement, the first between the China and the European Union, is believed to commit to cutting back on fossil fuels, developing more green technology and helping raise US$100 billion (S$138 billion) a year by 2020 to help poorer countries cut emissions.

Trump claimed before taking office that climate change was a "hoax" created by China to hurt the USA economy, an assertion that stands in defiance of broad scientific consensus. "We see it as our responsibility to strengthen our partnership in many fields and to work for a rules-based world order", she said.

Li said he believed the two had found a solution on the issue of Chinese quotas for electric cars after a lengthy discussion.

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Asked what kind of exchanges Beijing's leaders have had with Trump regarding his decision, Hua said China and the United States "have maintained close communications at various levels" on subjects including climate change.