Global Environment

Statement by the Honorable Yoriko Kawaguchi, Minister of the Environment of Japan, on behalf of the Japanese Delegation

November 7, 2001

Mr. President,

On behalf of the Japanese delegation, I wish to express our sincere appreciation to President Elyazghi and the Government of Morocco for hosting this Conference. Japan shall co-operate fully with you and engage constructively in the negotiations to ensure the success of COP7.

Mr. President,

The Bonn Agreement was a major breakthrough that took us closer to the entry into force of the Kyoto Protocol in 2002. Here in Marrakech, we must resolve the issues left over from the last session. The key lies in our ability to show flexibility, determination, and to work in a spirit of co-operation. To this end, the Japanese delegation is committed, as we had been in Bonn, to devote ourselves to consultations in the next few days, or roughly 56 hours. Let us be aware that the interests of the present and future generations cannot wait for interminable debate on the issues before us. On behalf of the Japanese Government, I pledge to do my utmost to foster an agreement at this session.

Mr. President,

Whether we can agree on workable rules for the Kyoto Mechanism will be crucial for ensuring the efficiency and sustainability of our future actions against climate change. We shall seek to establish realistic and predictable rules with limited restrictions to enable the various stakeholders to maximize their potential for creative activities. These rules can be adjusted and improved later on when the Kyoto Mechanism is put into practice. Imposing too many constraints on the Kyoto Mechanism may hinder its smooth functioning, to the detriment of all parties.

In considering the ratification of the Kyoto Protocol, it is extremely important for Japan that the agreement at COP7 will enable us to combine domestic emissions reductions with fully functioning mechanisms. This is particularly so because Japan's CO2 emission per GDP is among the lowest in the developed countries. It is our sincere hope that COP7 will succeed in putting in place effective and workable rules to combat climate change.

In our negotiations, Japan will adhere faithfully to the Bonn Agreement. We call upon all parties not to reopen discussion of the issues upon which we have agreed in Bonn.

Mr. President,

The prospect of a possible entry into force of the Kyoto Protocol and the convening of the World Summit on Sustainable Development presents an important opportunity for us to take a further step in our collective efforts against global warming. Japan firmly believes that effective actions against climate change require a global response in which all countries act by one single rule. We look forward to discussing this issue with our partners so that COP 7 will succeed in carving out a viable path into the future.

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