Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao Wednesday called on the international community to make joint efforts to promote sustainable development, and pledged that China is going to live up to its responsibilities as a major developing country on this issue.
Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao speaks at the UN Conference on Sustainable Development (Rio+20 summit), which opened in Rio de jaeiro Wednesday. [Xinhua]
"To jointly promote sustainable development, we should take a fair, just, open and inclusive approach," said Premier Wen at the three-day UN Conference on Sustainable Development (Rio+20 summit), which opened in Rio de jaeiro Wednesday.
He said that countries around the world should continue to work as partners, adhere to the Rio Principles, "especially the principle of common but differentiated responsibilities."
He announced that China will contribute US$6 million to a UN Environment Program trust fund for projects and activities that help developing countries raise capacity for environmental protection.
He also promised that China will make available 200 million yuan (US$31.7 million) for a three-year international project to help small island countries, least developed countries and African countries tackle climate change.
Meanwhile, the premier said China is ready to live up to its responsibilities. "The more it develops, the more opportunities China will create and the more contribution it will make to the world," he said.
China will help other developing countries raise capacity for environmental protection, ecological preservation and desertification control, Wen said.
Noting that major progress has been made in meeting the Millennium Development Goals, Wen pointed out that the global process of sustainable development is "not balanced" as the gap between the North and the South is widening and resources and environment related issues remain acute.
"Sustainable development faces new and grave challenges posed by the international financial crisis, climate change, energy and food security and local conflicts," Wen said, adding that "preserving resources and the environment to achieve sustainable development is the only choice we have."
Creating "a green and prosperous world" should be "the ultimate goal we should pursue as we work together to advance the global process of sustainable development," the premier said.
He proposed that to jointly promote sustainable development, the international community should explore effective models of growing green economy, he proposed.
While there are no uniform standards or models for green economy, "green economy should be pursued according to the actual conditions of a country," he said.
"We should pursue green economy as an effective way of promoting sustainable development in all countries and advancing global economic recovery," he said.
The premier also proposed improving the mechanism of global governance to promote sustainable development, stressing that the United Nations should play a leading role in developing an effective institutional framework of sustainable development.
"Its (the UN's) capacity for guidance, coordination and implementation should be enhanced so that it can better integrate the three pillars of economic growth, social progress and environmental protection," he said.
He called for "a new type of partnership" for sustainable development with the participation of international agencies, governments and the public.
He said promoting sustainable development is a great cause that will benefit both current and future generations and pledged that China will work with the international community to share opportunities and meet challenges.
UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon also called on world leaders to give more attention to "global interest" as they strive to work for a sustainable future for planet Earth.
"My message is clear: sustainable development is an idea whose time has come," the secretary-general told a press conference on Wednesday. "It is time to act as global leaders... We must be united for the global common good and united for humanity."
"The challenge here in Rio is to bring that vision to life, not just with words, but through actions. Let us never forget that Rio+20 is about people," he added.
More than 100 heads of state and government and over 40,000 representatives were attending the three-day summit, which aims to review the progress made since the 1992 Earth Summit, also held in Rio de Janeiro, and act urgently to promote sustainable development.