12 Nov 2010

Kiribati president pins hope on Cancun climate talks

2:38 pm on 12 November 2010

The President of Kiribati says he hopes next month's United Nations conference in Mexico will recognise the urgent need to deal with the impact of climate change on vulnerable nations.

Delegates from 18 countries attended the Tarawa Climate Change conference this week, which ended with 13 adopting the Ambo Declaration that is to be presented in Cancun.

Australia, New Zealand, Fiji, Japan, Solomon Islands, Tonga, Brazil and Canada signed the declaration, with China coming on board later, after initially refusing.

The Kiribati President Anote Tong says he hopes the declaration will lead to the fast tracking of financial help for vulnerable nations.

"The negotiations become an opportunity to negotiate further development finance and for climate vulnerable countries, this is a concern for us. Because that's going to take a long time, but we the vulnerable countries don't have that time. We are now faced with the realities of the problems and they've got to be attended to and there has got to be agreement on some aspects of the climate change crisis."

Anote Tong says the United States, Britain, India, France and the European Union did not sign the declaration.