GREEN FINANCE: US, China agree to cooperate on climate change, global debt relief

As published on: carbonbrief.org, Monday 13 November, 2023.

China and the US have agreed to improve cooperation on climate change and global debt relief after talks between US treasury secretary Janet Yellen and Chinese vice premier He Lifeng, the South China Morning Post reports.

The talks came ahead of the much-anticipated meeting on Wednesday between presidents Xi Jinping and Joe Biden, the paper notes. It says: “Both sides agreed not to aim for economic decoupling and to enhance cooperation on global debt relief and climate change, [China’s finance vice-minister] Liao [Min] said.

They also pledged to continue to work on strengthening the international financial architecture and promote increases in International Monetary Fund quotas.” Reuters says of the upcoming Xi-Biden meeting: “A main result is expected to be greater diplomacy – promises to talk more on key issues, including on climate, global health, economic stability, counter-narcotic efforts and potentially the resumption of some military-to-military channels after a high-level freeze.”

Another South China Morning Post article reports: “Beijing is ‘serious’ about its climate change efforts and plans to scale up clean energy, according to US climate envoy John Kerry.”

Meanwhile, the Hill reports criticism of the meeting by the US Republican opposition. Climate Home News carries a comment by Kate Logan of the Asia Society Policy Institute, saying the meeting “offers tantalising hope on climate action”.

She writes: “A high-level US-China agreement could provide the much-needed ‘course correction’ to keep world temperatures on track to remain below 1.5C”. Logan adds: “And it could also set the stage for a successful outcome at the COP28, the UN’s largest annual international climate conference taking place the first two weeks of December in Dubai.”

In the South China Morning Post, Wang Huiyao, founder of the Centre for China and Globalisation, a Beijing-based non-governmental thinktank, writes: “Amid increased geopolitical strife, our interconnected world requires a collaborative approach on climate change, conflict, infrastructure, public health, trade, and more, to safeguard our shared home.”


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