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[#WeFACE] Seoul to host P4G summit to tackle climate change

By Ahn Sung-mi

Published : May 26, 2021 - 15:21

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Key visual of the P4G Summit in Seoul (Ministry of Foreign Affairs) Key visual of the P4G Summit in Seoul (Ministry of Foreign Affairs)

South Korea is hosting the P4G summit starting Sunday, bringing together government, business and civil society leaders from around the world to tackle climate change and explore ways to achieve sustainable growth.

The second P4G summit, originally planned for last year but delayed due to the COVID-19 pandemic, will kick off virtually on Sunday for a two-day run in Seoul. It is the first-ever multilateral conference on the environment hosted by the Korean government.

P4G, which stands for “Partnering for Green Growth and the Global Goals 2030,” is a global initiative that seeks solutions for climate action and green economic growth through public-private partnerships and aims to deliver on the UN Sustainable Development Goals and the Paris Agreement. The forum involves 12 countries, including Korea, Denmark, South Africa, Indonesia and Mexico, as well as international organizations and private firms. The inaugural summit was held in Denmark in 2018.

This year’s summit, under the theme “Inclusive Green Recovery Towards Carbon Neutrality,” consists of five thematic sessions on water, food and agriculture, energy, cities and circular economy, and 10 special sessions on such issues as climate change response, inclusive green growth and sustainable development.

At the culmination of the summit, President Moon Jae-in and the other leaders will adopt the Seoul Declaration, which will highlight green recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic and set out goals and commitments in response to climate change.

A total of around 60 head of states and leaders of international organizations are expected to attend the event. US President Joe Biden is also expected to take part virtually from Washington.

Moon will declare the opening of the summit on Sunday and also chair a leaders’ session on carbon neutrality on Monday.

With the upcoming summit, Korea hopes to show its leadership and commitment in addressing climate change on the international stage, especially at a critical time when there are growing calls for a sustainable, green recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic.

The upcoming P4G is also set to pave the way for another major summit in November, the 26th UN Climate Change Conference of the Parties in Glasgow, Scotland. At the COP26, the 195 countries that signed the Paris Agreement will come together to review and report back on their progress on the commitments made under the accord. Adopted in 2015, the Paris Agreement set out an ambitious goal of limiting the global temperature rise to no more than 1.5 degrees Celsius above preindustrial levels or 2 degrees Celsius by the end of the century.

“Though the summit, the Korean government will show the global community its strong commitment to combating climate change, while promoting international cooperation ahead of the upcoming COP26,” said Yoo Yeon-chul, the executive director of the 2021 P4G Seoul Summit Preparatory Office.

Meanwhile, President Moon is set to hold summit talks with Prime Minister Mette Frederiksen of Denmark via video link just before the P4G, to discuss cooperation for its success as well as other bilateral issues.

By Ahn Sung-mi (sahn@heraldcorp.com)