ISLAMABAD: Pakistan’s foreign office said on Thursday it had “full trust” in the nomination of Sultan Ahmed Al-Jaber, the UAE’s climate envoy and minister of industry and technology, as president of this year’s UN climate conference, COP28.
Al-Jaber's appointment to lead the climate summit this year fuelled activists' worries that big industry was hijacking the world's response to the global warming crisis.
The UAE, a major OPEC oil exporter, will be the second Arab state to host the climate conference after Egypt in 2022.
The UAE and other Gulf energy producers have called for a realistic energy transition in which hydrocarbons would keep a role in energy security while making commitments to decarbonisation.
“Pakistan has full trust that under the stewardship of H.E. Sultan Ahmed Al Jaber as President of COP28, we will be able to drive the global agenda on climate change in a positive direction decisively in December 2023,” the foreign office said.
“Pakistan believes that the United Arab Emirates’ Presidency of COP-28 is an opportunity for meaningful progress and effective global action on key areas to mitigate and reverse the negative impacts of climate change.”
The foreign office said the UAE had over the years demonstrated a “strong commitment” to renewable energy sources, such as solar and wind power, and through initiatives like the Masdar City project, the Abu Dhabi Clean Energy Strategy, the UAE Net Zero by 2050, and clean fossil fuels, the Emirates had made “substantial investments” in leading global efforts for achieving the goal and targets of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change and its Paris Agreement.
The UAE has also manifested its commitment towards combating climate change by implementing several sustainable initiatives to mitigate climate change effects.
“For instance, the Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum Solar Park, one of the largest renewable energy projects globally, contributes to reducing carbon emissions,” the foreign office added.
“The UAE has also invested in sustainable agriculture, water conservation, and waste management, demonstrating a comprehensive approach to addressing various aspects of the climate crisis.”
Pakistan said UAE’s strategic location allowed it to play a key role in addressing climate change by serving as “a bridge between the global north and global south in fostering international cooperation, knowledge sharing, and innovation to find common solutions.”