South Africa officially handed over the presidency of negotiations on Climate Change to Qatar, whose representative, opened the first negotiating session.
More than 17,000 delegates, experts and journalists gathered in the capital of Qatar to participate vkonferentsii UN climate change. As expected, the main themes of a two-week talks, which began on 26 November, will be the conditions of the second commitment period of the Kyoto Protocol and its mechanisms for raising funds in the Green Climate Fund.
Minister of International Relations and Cooperation of South Africa Maite Nkoana-Mashabane, who led the negotiations in 2012, officially handed over the representative of Qatar, the former Energy Minister Abdullah bin Hamad al-Attie.
"It was an honor to preside over the conference, which will go down in history as a shining example of what can be achieved with multilateral cooperation", — said Nkoana-Mashabane, speaking at the opening ceremony.
She reminded the audience an African proverb, which states that "if you want to go fast — go alone, if you want to go far — go together with others," and expressed the hope that the outcome of the Doha decision will be needed to achieve a common goal — the fight climate change and adapt to its consequences.
"We need to continue to build on the foundation established in Durban … I hope that the outcome of this conference will be a clear signal that the negotiation process works," — said the representative of South Africa.
Nkoana-Mashabane emphasized that the consensus needed for decision making in the UN climate negotiations, it is "the responsibility of not only the president of the conference, but also to all parties."
"This is a historic conference, critical in terms of the issues … This is a turning point in the history of the negotiations," — said al-Attiyah, the first time in his capacity as chairman of the official conference of parties.
Al-Attiyah said that the importance of the conference, which he called "an excellent opportunity" to promote the negotiation process, is already apparent in the fact that within its framework will both work seven negotiating groups.
Previous, 17th, session Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) in Durban in the morning ended December 11, 2011, almost 36 hours later than planned. Following the session, which has become the longest in the history of the negotiations, the countries agreed to set up a new working group that will develop by 2015 a new regulatory tool designed to replace the Kyoto Protocol, as well as on the second commitment period of the protocol.