China delegation arrives for climate talks

The Minister for Climate Change and Energy Efficiency Greg Combet today welcomed the arrival of his Chinese counterpart, Xie Zhenhua, to Australia for the 3rd Australia- China Ministerial Dialogue on Climate Change, saying the Australian government's plan to introduce a carbon price would be a key focus of the discussions.

The Minister for Climate Change and Energy Efficiency Greg Combet today welcomed the arrival of his Chinese counterpart, Xie Zhenhua, to Australia for the 3rd Australia- China Ministerial Dialogue on Climate Change, saying the Australian government's plan to introduce a carbon price would be a key focus of the discussions.

As the Vice Chairman of the National Development and Reform Commission, China's economic development planning agency, he is responsible for China’s climate change policies.

“China, Australia’s largest trading partner, has begun the transition to a low carbon future,” Mr Combet said. “I will outline for Vice Chairman Xie the steps the Australian Government is taking to reduce emissions and transform the economy by introducing a carbon price.

“I also look forward to hearing further from Vice Chairman Xie about the climate action that China is taking, including the new steps that the country will take as part of its latest Five Year Plan.”

“As a developing country, it is understandable that China’s overall emissions continue to rise as they aspire to lift much of their population out of poverty. The challenge for China, indeed all countries in the world, is to continue to develop in a sustainable manner - to decouple economic growth from growth in carbon pollution,“ Mr Combet said.

“We continue to work closely with the Chinese Government and other major emitters to encourage concerted global action to address climate change.”

On Monday, Vice Chairman Xie and the Parliamentary Secretary for Climate Change and Energy Efficiency, Mark Dreyfus, will address Australian business leaders at a business roundtable in Melbourne, hosted by the Global Foundation.

In addition to their formal dialogue, Mr Combet and Vice Chairman Xie will give the opening addresses to the Australia-China Climate Change Forum at the ANU on 30 March. This event will bring together academics and officials from both countries to deepen understanding on climate change policies in both countries.