Chirac predicts tough talks on climate at G8

28th June 2005, Comments 0 comments

PARIS, June 28 (AFP) - The G8 summit in Scotland next month will have to grapple with divergences over global warming and the threat to economic growth posed by "deep imbalances" such as the sky-high price of oil, French President Jacques Chirac said Tuesday.

PARIS, June 28 (AFP) - The G8 summit in Scotland next month will have to grapple with divergences over global warming and the threat to economic growth posed by "deep imbalances" such as the sky-high price of oil, French President Jacques Chirac said Tuesday.

"I won't hide the fact that negotiations are currently very difficult" on climate change, one of the summit's key agenda items, Chirac was quoted as telling a preparatory roundtable meeting of French officials in Paris.

"I'm not optimistic," he said.

One of the sticking points is the Kyoto protocol on climate change.

Europe has adopted the text, which calls for a reduction in greenhouse gas emissions, while US President George W. Bush's administration has refused to ratify it, saying it is ineffective and unnecessary.

Chirac said France was holding out for a "clear mention" of the protocol in the G8 summit's final joint statement and a recognition that fighting global warming was urgent.

At the same time, the president said world economic growth was "weakened by deep imbalances," in particular over the high price of oil, which acts as a brake on industrial output.

Other problems stemmed from "erratic currency trading movements, company relocations abroad which are accelerating... these pose a real problem for managing the world today."

Leaders of the G8 leading industrialised countries are to meet in Gleneagles, Scotland on July 6-8.

The G8 comprises Britain, Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, Russia and the United States.

Copyright AFP

Subject: French news

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