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HindustanTimes Sat,30 Aug 2014

Manmohan, Obama and Jiabao to meet on sustainable growth parameters

Chetan Chauhan, Hindustan Times  New Delhi, May 05, 2012
First Published: 19:13 IST(5/5/2012) | Last Updated: 19:14 IST(5/5/2012)

The big three - Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, US President Barack Obama and Chinese premier Wen Jiabao - are likely to meet in Rio De Janerio, capital of Brazil, in June end.

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They will be there to participate in the Earth Summit, also called Rio-plus 20, where head of the states are expected to agree on how the world should grow in a sustainable manner in the next 20 years. The three day long head of the state session starting with ministerial dialogue would end on June 22 with a meeting of world leaders. 

A United Nations led panel has proposed sustainable development goals to replace millennium development goals after 2015 but India and China are opposed the deadline based goals.

The north-south divide in the draft of the final document for head of the states is clear from ongoing negotiations at UN headquarters in New York. “As the negotiators are not budging from their states positions we expect the head to states to arrive at a consensus on future course of action,” an official, who was part of the negotiating team said.

UN secretary general Ban Ki-moon is keen on success of the Earth Summit and said to have invited Prime Minister Manmohan Singh for the conference during his recent visit to India. The two leaders also discussed about sustainable and clean energy at a meeting last week. 

Official sources said that Prime Minister Singh is keen to visit Rio as it could be probable a last meeting with Obama and Jiabao at one place. Obama is likely to get busy with his election campaign and Jiabao would be replaced by Xi Jinping, the new premier, later in 2012.

“An agreement at Rio, if it happens, would be path-breaking,” a senior government functionary said. Its possibilities as of now are not very bright. An official, however, seemed optimistic saying that political leaders know how to wriggle out of “bureaucratic brackets”.

The problem with the draft of the outcome document being discussed by negotiators of around 200 countries is “too ambitious” nature to attain sustainability that can hamper quick growth opportunities for the developing world.

The draft imposes more restrictions on emerging economies such as India, China and Brazil than the developed world and giving very less in return to agree to these restrictions.

The European Union, which has been a driving force, behind the outcome draft is will to budge to make SDGS as voluntary targets with periodic review for the development world, excluding India and China. That is a reason for heart burn for India and China.


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