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Minister Yang Xiaoguang Attends the Online Session "COP15: The Chinese Presidency" Hosted by the Environment and Climate Change Committee of the House of the Lords of the UK
2021/07/20

On 2 July, Minister Yang Xiaoguang attended an online session on COP15 hosted by the Environment and Climate Change Committee of the House of the Lords of the UK, where he briefed the participants on China’s preparation for the conference and answered questions. The session was broadcast live on BBC parliament channel and its digital platform.

During the briefing, Minister Yang said that China would mark the centenary of the founding of the Communist Party of China in two days. The CPC has led China to achieve extraordinary success in the past 100 years. The most important reason behind such success is that the CPC has always put the people front and centre, and regarded serving the interests of the greatest majority of the people as its fundamental goal. Under the leadership of the CPC, the Chinese people have achieved tremendous progress in poverty alleviation. Over 800 million people are lifted out of poverty and over 400 million people joined the middle-income group.

“The Chinese people are aspiring for a better life. They hope to live in a more beautiful environment with blue sky, clear water and clean air. There is no doubt that the CPC and the Chinese Government would work to meet the aspiration of the people. That is why China is making unprecedented efforts to achieve environmental protection and ecological conservation goals,” added Yang.

Yang noted, President Xi Jinping said on many occasions that “lucid waters and lush mountains are just as precious as mountains of gold and silver”, and that “we should protect the ecological environment like protecting our eyes and life”. China has continued to step up the preservation of biodiversity, actively engaged in regional and international cooperation in this respect and outlined clear requirements and comprehensive arrangements on the preservation of biodiversity in the 14th Five Year Plan. The COP15 to be held in Kunming in October this year is themed on “Ecological Civilization: Building a Shared Future for All Life on Earth”. China will strive to bring all parties together to take a historic step in the direction of reversing the trend of the loss of biodiversity and bring global governance on biodiversity to a new stage.

“We must remain committed to practical cooperation and shoulder our responsibilities, give priority to ecological conservation and remain committed to green development, and step up actions and enhance global governance on environmental protection, so as to add new impetus to the preservation and sustainable use of biodiversity,” said Minister Yang.

Yang said that the year 2021 is an important year for global governance on environmental protection because of COP15 and COP26, which China and the UK will host respectively. The two sides should make vigorous efforts to deliver on the agreements between the leaders and enhance coordination and cooperation, so as to achieve positive outcomes of the two conferences. “It is my hope that more British parliamentarians and people of all sectors will contribute to the success of COP15 and COP26, and to deeper China-UK cooperation and global cooperation on environment protection,” said Yang in closing.

The briefing was followed by an hour-long discussion in which Minister Yang took questions from the peers on China-UK relationship, China’s green development, expectation of goals and outcomes of COP15, coordination between COP15 and COP26, and climate change financing.

Baroness Parminter and the peers attending the session said the centenary of the founding of the Communist Party of China marked a significant moment. They extended appreciation to Minister Yang for his introduction on China’s policies and position, which they believed would enhance understanding of COP15 and the prospects of UK-China cooperation. They also expressed willingness to play a positive role in promoting UK-China cooperation in related areas.

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