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LDC Group statement at closing of May-June Climate Change Conference – Sessions of the Subsidiary Bodies 2021

Date: 17 June 2021

Chairs, Co-Chairs, Distinguished delegates and colleagues,

  1. I have the honour to make this statement on behalf of the Least Developed Countries Group, representing the 46 most vulnerable countries to the impacts of climate change, despite contributing the least to causing it.
  2. Allow me to begin by associating ourselves with the statement made by the Republic of Guinea on behalf of the G77 and China.
  3. Let me first express my appreciation to the Subsidiary Bodies Chairs for your continued leadership and all the co-facilitators across the respective agenda items. It is important that we capture views and positions exchanged informally during these sessions. Thank you also for your hard work in preparing the informal documents that we feel are a step in the right direction.
  4. I would also like to reflect upon the virtual convenings of the past 3 weeks.
  5. We thank the UN Secretary General as well as the UNFCCC Executive Secretary and her team for providing us with this platform for our session. It must have been a huge effort to have everything ready for us in time and, while there were some difficulties at the beginning, it proved to be a useful and accessible tool.
  6. Nevertheless, members of our constituency and many others faced several challenges when engaging in virtual meetings, including poor quality internet connection and difficulty with time zones. We appreciate the Secretariat for responding to such technical problems during the virtual meetings in a timely manner.
  7. With regards to progress at this session, there are several points the LDC Group would like to raise.
  8. On Loss and Damage, the Group appreciates the opportunity given to Parties to discuss the operationalization of the Santiago Network for Loss and Damage informally. It was helpful to hear Parties´ views and we continue to stress that this needs to remain a Party-driven process. The outcome must not be merely virtual. The issue of Loss and Damage remains key to our group and we expect it to be given enhanced consideration at upcoming sessions. Action and support for loss and damage must be anchored as a deliverable for COP26.
  9. On adaptation, the LDC Group is happy that we had an opportunity to consider important agenda items at this session including on Matters related to Least Developed Countries and National Adaptation Plans under the SBI and Nairobi Work Programme under the SBSTA. We found the exchange of views with other Parties on these items constructive and encouraging and we are confident that we should be able to make progress once we meet in person.
  10. On sub-items related to Article 13 of the Paris Agreement, we welcome efforts made by cofacilitators to prepare informal notes that capture all Parties’ views. Discussions have helped to deepen dialogue and understanding on this vital item. However, we have only five months to COP 26, and we still see that divergent positions remain. It is urgent to find common ground, narrow down options and accelerate progress on the remaining technical work through the inter-sessional work. Parties must begin domestic preparations to transition to the Enhanced Transparency Framework by 2024, and COP 26 is our last opportunity to finish outstanding issues to put the system into action. In completing this work, we must ensure that developing countries, and especially LDCs, are provided with the resources and capacity building support needed to produce BTRs and to sustain reporting capacity on a permanent basis.
  11. On Article 6, While some progress was made, it is evident to us that more work is required to resolve some of the complexities surrounding Article 6. There is more work required on Article 6.2 reporting, overall mitigation in global emissions and share of proceeds under Article 6.2. We are very concerned about the concept of “other mitigation purposes” in Article 6.2 as this concept could lead to a huge loophole in accounting. We are greatly concerned that some countries continue to push for a carry-over of Kyoto Protocol units, despite the downward pressure this would place on ambition. We must ensure that the work program on non- market approaches is launched as quickly as possible as this can unlock significant opportunities for LDCs. Finally, we make a sincere plea to launch a dedicated capacity building work program for LDCs and SIDS so that we can meet the participation and reporting requirements under Article 6.
  12. On finance, at the broader level, the delivery of ‘$100 billion per year by 2020’ commitment is critical and the COP26 should begin deliberations on a new finance goal. This goal should be based on science and the needs of the developing countries. With regards to the deliberation at this session, we welcome discussions across the several agenda items and the mandated workshops. However, progress varied across items, with some issues of concern that may put at risk the future predictability, adequacy, and sustainability of financial support for developing countries.
  13. On the Programme Budget for the Biennium 2022-2023, there was good progress on understanding budget options and on capturing views for possible elements for conclusion and decisions texts by COP26. On the Fourth Review of the Adaptation Fund, after discussions during this session, we expect that the review can be formally initiated in Glasgow. As the Adaptation Fund is serving the Paris Agreement since 2019, we think this, and other factual recent developments should be reflected in the Review process.
  14. On provision of support for reporting, we had just one session for discussion, with disappointing progress. Financial and technical support will be extremely important to continue building capacities in developing countries. Discussions should address the different needs for delivering reports under the Convention and through the Enhanced Transparency framework under the Paris Agreement.
  15. Finally, on the finance related agenda items, on the workshops on Long Term Finance and on Ex-Ante Financial information we have learned that, while there has been some progress on several aspects of climate finance, there is still much work to do, to achieve the level, access and quality of support that developing countries and our global goals require.
  16. On the second periodic review of the long-term global goal, the LDC Group welcomes the progress made on this issue. This process is crucial for enhancing the science-policy interface of the UNFCCC as well as maintaining the scientific integrity of processes under the Convention. We look forward to engaging with other Parties and experts on the second and third instalments of the Structured Expert Dialogue in November 2021 and June 2022 respectively, with the view of completing the second periodic review as mandated in 2022.
  17. With regards to the discussions on Research and Systematic Observation (RSO), we appreciate the hard work put in by the co-facilitators to come up with the draft text. We look forward to engaging with this text in the next SBSTA meetings. Furthermore, we welcome the acknowledgement extended for the organisations such as WMO, GCOS and the IPCC in the draft text, as the scientific information provided by these organisations play a key role in our understanding of the Earth System and the associated risks posed by climate change.
  18. Regarding the issue of common time frames for NDCs, the LDC group would like to express our serious frustration with the lack of progress on this important issue. We emphasis that Parties must agree by COP26 a single common time frame for all Parties which can feed into the architecture and 5-year rhythm of the Paris Agreement, including the global stocktake. We request the SBI Chair to provide a revised informal note capturing the discussions held in this session with clear options for the considerations of our Ministers without prejudicing the final outcome at COP26.
  19. On technology development and transfer, Parties have had a useful discussion on aligning the independent review of the CTCN and the periodic assessment of the Technology Mechanism at this session. The LDC Group believes that both reviews are important tools for assessing the effectiveness of the Technology Mechanism. We look forward to further discussing the options for alignment and hope to enhance the complementarity of the review and assessment. As most agenda items on technology development and transfer were only scheduled for subsequent SBs to be held during COP26, more time may be required in order to conclude our work in Glasgow.
  20. On Capacity Building, we observe very fruitful collaboration on discussing informal note in preparation for the COP26 conclusion of review for the frameworks for capacity building under the Kyoto Protocol and the Convention. This vital cycle of review is important to our group and we are happy that a basis for a decision at the COP was discussed. At the same time discussions on the review of the Doha Work Program on the Implementation of Actions for Climate Empowerment (ACE) were extensive and produced a summary by co-facilitators capturing views of parties. Several issues still remain. Following many submissions, the road to CoP 26 in Glasgow could benefit from further streamlining of the text by the SB Chair and the CoP Presidency. Our goal should be having a long-term vision, with short term implementation plans for sustainable capacity building covering all the elements of the Work Programme.
  21. On Agriculture, we would like to appreciate the work done under KJWA topics, related to improved nutrient use and manure management towards sustainable and resilient agricultural systems; improved livestock management systems, including agro-pastoral production systems and others, and socio-economic and food security dimensions of climate change in the agricultural sector, while highlighting the importance of agriculture sector to the economic development of the major population of the LDCs. In this context, we are of the view that it is time to shift from discussions to implementation of KJWA outcomes, and this can be realised only when modalities are put in place to ensure that the outcomes of each topic under the KJWA roadmap as well as the previous and future topics are implemented accordingly.

    Chairs, Distinguished delegates and colleagues,

  22. We are mindful of the fact that the level of ambition presented to date is extremely inadequate to limit temperature increase to 1.5°C and we therefore like to reiterate our call for countries to strengthen their 2030 targets consistent with 1.5°C pathways by presenting more ambitious NDCs well ahead of COP26. We also urge countries to come forward with their long-term, low GHG emissions development strategies that map the path towards a net zero world by 2050.
  23. As we move forward, we must find ways to make progress and alleviate the scale of work from here to COP26.We must use the little time left wisely.
  24. As it was proposed by many during this session, we request COP Presidencies, COP Bureau and UNFCCC Secretariat to seriously consider organisation of an additional inter-sessional work between now and COP26 on items that require more work.
  25. We do not support any attempts to slow down overall progress for political reasons. However, we may have to allocate more time for some of the complex issues such as items on Article 6 and Article 13. The additional time could be in the form of informal-informal.
  26. COP26 is fast approaching, and the plan remains unclear. We need to hear from the UK government how various issues that have been flagged earlier will be overcome, so that we can be assured that the COP will be inclusive and accessible to everyone. We have seen over the last couple of weeks that while virtual negotiations are better than nothing, the quality of discussions is definitely impaired. It is critical that the voices of the most vulnerable and observers are included in decision making on the global response to climate change. Ensuring inclusivity of COP26 is paramount. We cannot risk unambitious or unfair outcomes in Glasgow.

    Chairs, Distinguished delegates and colleagues,

  27. The expectations of the world are great and the stakes could not be higher. The LDCs know what is at stake and the lives and livelihoods of our people hang in the balance.
  28. We hope during the coming weeks and months, we deliver progress across all of the points I have mentioned in line with our ambition and momentum under the Paris Agreement, to put us on track not just to meeting our COP26 deadline, but to ensuring a safer and more prosperous future for all.
  29. Thank you for your leadership and hard work. Please be assured of our Group’s full support to you and our constructive engagement moving forward.

I thank you.

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