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India, Egypt form joint working group on climate change

India, Egypt form joint working group on climate change

Cairo: Ahead of the UN climate conference in Paris later this year, India and Egypt have decided to form a "joint working group" for "cooperation on environment and climate change".

"The joint working group will discuss and finalise the areas of cooperation in the fields of climate change, urban waste management, hazardous waste management, environmental education and all other facets of environmental governance in the two countries," Environment Minister Prakash Javadekar said.

"The group will consist of concerned officers of India and Egypt, and the first meeting will be held in the near future in India," he said at a press meet in the presence of Indian Ambassador to Egypt Navdeep Suri at the Indian Embassy here.

Javadekar is attending the Fifteenth Session of African Ministerial Conference on Environment, which is being held here from March 4 to 6. India, China and France are special invitees for the conference.

At the opening session of the Conference on Wednesday, he outlined India's position on climate change, particularly in the context of the upcoming 21st Conference of Parties (COP) of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCC) in Paris in December 2015.

Javadekar said India wants the upcoming 21st COP of the UNFCC on Climate Change to be successful, keeping in mind the needs of developing countries.

"India's stand on climate change is mostly the same as the African Union and India will stand by the African countries. The developed world must take action immediately as time is short and the world must act fast. If we want Paris convention to succeed, we need to sort out issues in time," he said.

Javadekar said the pledges of green climate fund are inadequate. The issue of critical technology is unresolved.

"India will always echo African aspiration and partner in fighting the challenge of climate change," he added.

On the sidelines of the conference, the minister engaged with a number of ministers from African countries in separate bilateral talks on Wednesday and Thursday.

Javadekar held meetings with his counterparts from Ghana, Somalia, Ethiopia, Mali, Tanzania, Angola, Uganda and the Democratic Republic of Congo. He also met with the executive director of United Nations Environment Programme Achim Steiner.

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