President Berdimuhamedov of Turkmenistan made an important speech on 25 May 2021 at the UN-led global roundtable on extractive industries as engine for sustainable development. The event, anchored by Secretary General António Guterres was held in the video format.
This was the last of the five roundtables focused on FFDI – Financing for the Development in the Era of COVID-19 and Beyond Initiative.
The roundtables looked at the Covid-19 damage and ways for recovery in a number of areas including investment, revenue, debt, illicit financial flows, technology and climate action, and extractives industries.
The idea was to build a dialogue leading to the global response and recovery plans under the Initiative on Financing for Development in the Era of COVID-19 and Beyond (FfDI).
Here are a couple of paragraphs from UN website Covid-19 Response about the event:
“The pandemic presents a once-in-a-lifetime chance to support a just transition away from fossil fuels turn extractive industries into an engine for a low-carbon, resilient and inclusive future. The green energy transition, accelerated by the crisis, also offers a tremendous opportunity to create new jobs, redress social and environmental inequities and support developing countries, many of which are rich in the materials needed for the renewables revolution.
“This roundtable concludes a series of five regional roundtables held over the past several months in collaboration with the UN Regional Economic Commissions, with support from UNDP, UNCTAD, DESA, and UNEP. It will feature high-level participation by Heads of State and Government, the Secretary-General and Deputy-Secretary General of the United Nations, the Executive Secretaries of the Regional Economic Commissions and key stakeholders from the private sector, civil society and academia.”
Links to Documents:
- Concept Note for the High-Level Global Roundtable on Extractive Industries
- Secretary-General’s Policy Brief on Extractive Industries
- Regional brief on Extractive Industries: Transition to Sustainable Systems
Speech of President Berdimuhamedov at the roundtable
Dear Secretary General!
Let me thank you for the invitation to take part in this representative international forum.
First of all, I would like to emphasize that Turkmenistan, fully sharing the concern over the negative impact of industrial emissions into the environment, consistently and resolutely advocates the closest coordination and coherence of international efforts aimed at minimizing the risks and challenges that exist in this regard.
We are convinced that a strong and universal commitment to the Paris Agreement on climate change must be a key factor here. It is this document that is called upon to determine the entire global ecological and environmental agenda in the current century, to ensure the high efficiency of international legal mechanisms for its implementation.
By joining this fundamental document, Turkmenistan has actively taken a course towards substantive cooperation with the UN and other specialized international structures for its widespread implementation.
Currently, in accordance with the obligations under the Paris Agreement, in Turkmenistan, with the support of the United Nations Environment Program (UNEP) and the United Nations Development Program (UNDP), the Fourth National Communication on Climate Change and the First Biennial Communication are being developed. It is planned that both documents will be submitted to the UN Secretariat in early 2023.
Together with the United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO), we are also preparing two major projects to protect the ozone layer.
We are ready to continue to closely cooperate with these and other international structures, all interested states.
As one of the world’s largest resource-producing countries and fully aware of its responsibility in this regard, Turkmenistan makes every effort to maintain a balance between production goals and environmental protection objectives.
The adoption in 2019 of the new edition of the National Strategy of Turkmenistan on Climate Change provided all the necessary legal, organizational and technological conditions for the implementation of environmental objectives, served as the basis for a radical expansion of the list of adaptation measures.
Today, this list covers almost the entire system of economic and industrial activity of the public and private sectors of the economy.
In recent years, the carbon intensity of products manufactured in Turkmenistan has been steadily decreasing.
Let me give you a few figures.
According to expert estimates carried out within the framework of the third National Communication of Turkmenistan, in the long term until 2030, economic growth will be accompanied by a decrease in the share of energy consumption per unit of GDP. Thus, there will be a downward trend in the growth rate of carbon dioxide emissions to 122.0% in 2025 and to 118.1% in 2030.
The country is widely introducing adaptation measures to restore forests and improve land use to mitigate climate impacts. As part of the National Green Belt Program, extensive forest belts have been created around cities using progressive water-saving irrigation methods.
This year alone, it is planned to plant an additional 30 million seedlings in the country.
This work is designed for the long term, will be carried out purposefully and as efficiently as possible, including on the principles of public-private partnership.
Reaffirming its strong commitment to uniting and strengthening international efforts in the face of today’s serious environmental threats, Turkmenistan proposes a number of concrete and urgent steps.
In particular, we consider it necessary to start developing a UN Strategy aimed at implementing measures to develop low-carbon energy. Our second proposal is the creation, under the auspices of the UN, of an international “Road Map” for the development of hydrogen as one of the priority directions in the energy sector.
As the initiator of these proposals, Turkmenistan is ready to begin in the near future at the expert level to discuss the ways and criteria for their implementation.
We invite you to cooperation.
I wish the participants of the “round table” success in achieving their goals. /// nCa, 26 May 2021