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BASIC Countries Call for Strengthened Commitments Ahead of Doha

21 September 2012: The 12th BASIC Ministerial Meeting on Climate Change concluded with the adoption of a joint statement in which the leaders reiterate their commitment to a successful outcome of the 18th session of the Conference of the Parties (COP 18) to the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), to take place at the end of 2012, in Doha, Qatar.

Ministers from Brazil, China, India and South Africa (BASIC) held their 12th meeting from 20-21 September 2012, in Brasilia, Brazil. The meeting was also attended by representatives from Algeria, Argentina, Barbados and Qatar as per the BASIC-plus approach.

In the statement, BASIC leaders reaffirm the welcoming of the UN Conference on Sustainable Development (UNCSD, Rio+20) outcome document “The Future We Want,” as well as the outcome from the 17th session of the Conference of the Parties (COP 17) to the UNFCCC in Durban, South Africa, in 2011, as a carefully balanced package, calling for its full implementation.

Looking forward to COP 18, the joint statement emphasizes the importance of the final formal adoption of a second commitment period of the Kyoto Protocol as "a key deliverable for Doha and an essential basis for ambition within the regime." Ministers urge Annex I Parties to present concrete information on their quantified emission limitation and reduction objectives (QELROs) for inscription under the second commitment period, expressing concern about the low level of ambition reflected in QELROs submitted by Annex I Parties.

They emphasize the importance of achieving "a successful and meaningful conclusion" of the Ad Hoc Working Group on Long-term Cooperative Action under the Convention (AWG-LCA) in Doha, and reaching an understanding on how to address ongoing issues in case they are not concluded in Doha.

On finance, BASIC leaders stress the need to: consider sources of long-term finance and the continued scaling-up of financing in the 2013-2020 period; and conclude, in Doha, the arrangements between the COP and the Green Climate Fund.

They recognize that the Durban Platform "offers a clear opportunity for the strengthening of the regime," and reaffirm that both the negotiation process and its result shall be under the Convention, in particular in accordance with the principles of equity and common but differentiated responsibilities and respective capabilities. Ministers further note their concern over the insufficiency of current mitigation pledges of Annex I Parties, stressing that in aggregate, they represent a lower mitigation potential contribution than the nationally appropriate mitigation actions (NAMAs) of non-Annex I Parties.

Finally the statement expresses concerns over the inclusion of international aviation in the EU Emissions Trading Scheme (EU-ETS), and the planned unilateral inclusion of other sectors, noting that this apporach "undermines confidence and weakens efforts to tackle climate change on a multilateral basis." [BASIC Joint Statement]