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G20 Rome Summit: Closing press conference on 31 October 2021 held at the Nuvola

The G20 in Rome just ended with a press conference. eTurboNews Italy correspondent Mario Masciullo attended. Among the main themes of the works, besides the pandemic and vaccines, were the climate crisis, economic recovery, and the situation in Afghanistan.

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  • The closing G20 Rome Summit press conference on 31 October 2021 was held at the Nuvola. 
  • The Italian Prime Minister, Mario Draghi, opened the G20, hoping for a unity of intent against the pandemic.
  • The summit was held for the first time in Italy.

For Francesco Tufarelli, President of the “Europolitica” network, he said it is “fundamental to put the human person back at the center of political and economic actions.”

Said PM Draghi: “May the world walk together to win the fight against the pandemic.”

The closing G20 Rome Summit press conference by Prime Minister Mario Draghi

The topics

G20, an agreement between the US and the EU for the removal of duties on steel and aluminum. Draghi: “First step towards greater commercial openness.”

G20, towards a downward agreement on the climate: a ceiling of 1.5 degrees of global warming but only a vague reference to zero emissions “by mid-century”

G20, Draghi claims: “We have filled the words with substance. We will gradually reach 2050 as the date for zero emissions.”

“At this summit, we made sure that our dreams are still alive but now we must make sure we turn them into facts,” said the premier at a press conference. “Finally, there is a promise to give 100 billion a year for poor countries.” And he then announced that Italy will triple its financial commitment to 1.4 billion a year for the next 5 years for the green climate fund.

The Prime Minister then went into the specifics of the results obtained, explaining that “we have committed considerable resources; we have kept these commitments, and we have ensured that our dreams are still alive and are making progress. We will be judged for what we do, not for what we say,” echoing the words of several leaders. And he then promised: “We are proud” of the results obtained at the G20 but “this is only the beginning.”

G20, Draghi: “100 billion from G20 for poor countries on climate.”

“The G20 was a success,” said the Prime Minister, Mario Draghi, who has decided to evaluate the summit that has just ended in Rome on the climate emergency. A summit that, he says, has brought several benefits, even if “it was not easy.” Among these, the PM cites the reform of international taxation “that we have tried to do for years without success,” the limit of 1.5 C° of average global warming that “improves the Paris Agreements,” in addition to “having brought some countries skeptical of common positions on decarbonization,“ with clear reference to Russia and, above all, China.

The first success that Draghi underlined is the maximum limit of the rise in global average temperatures, set at 1.5 C °: “In terms of climate, for the first time, the G20 countries have committed to keeping within reach the goal of containing warming below 1.5 degrees with immediate action and medium-term commitments,” he said at his final press conference. Adding that “public funding” for the construction of new coal plants “will not go beyond the end of this year.”

The issue of zero emissions and the resistance shown by China and Russia, which did not accept the 2050 deadline, are projecting the goal to the next decade (2060). The main theme of the questions posed by journalists to Prime Minister Draghi who, however, is said to be satisfied, even showing himself surprised by the openness, (according to him), shown by the two governments.

“From China until a few days ago I expected a more rigid attitude; there was the desire to grasp a language more oriented towards the future than the past,” added Draghi, “Russia and China have accepted the scientific evidence of the 1.5 C°, which involves very considerable sacrifices, [and] are not easy commitments to keep. China produces 50% of the world’s steel; many plants run on coal; it is a difficult transition.” And on the limit to 2050, he added: “Compared to the previous situation, the commitment is a little more towards 2050 in the language of the press release. It is not accurate, but it was absent before. There has been a shift with a more hopeful language even on the part of the countries that until now had said no.”

And this agreement was possible, he explained, only thanks to an approach based on multilateralism that involved all the powers present: “At the G20 we saw countries that approached the positions of others with the right language,” he said.

“I thank Ambassador Mattiolo and all the Sherpas for the work they have done. Something has changed at the G20, which is that without cooperation, we do not move forward, and the best cooperation we know is multilateralism, with rules written long ago and which have guaranteed us prosperity.

The rules to be changed must be changed together.”

And he gives an example: “For the first time in a G20 document, in paragraph 30, we find a sentence that speaks of mechanisms for setting coal prices. We call on the various components of the G20 to act in accordance with their mandates to achieve these goals and an appropriate mix for economies with low greenhouse gas emissions by setting a target for the poorest countries. The link that gave rise to the change is the awareness that any progress compared to the past together with the promise of help from the richer countries makes sense. It is one of the cases in which both China and Russia have decided to change their position.”

Draghi, who strongly wanted this summit, also recalled the commitment made to the poorest countries in the world: “We have laid the foundations for a more equitable recovery and found new ways to support countries in the world,” concluded PM Draghi.

Additional remarks

Biden: “We will arrive at tangible results, thanks to Italy.”

The summit of G20 leaders in Rome produced “tangible” results on the climate, the COVID-19 pandemic, and the economy. US President Joe Biden said this in the final press conference, before leaving for Glasgow, for COP26, and expressly thanked Italy and Prime Minister Mario Draghi for “the great work done.”

“I believe we have made tangible progress, also thanks to the determination that the United States has brought to the table” of the discussions. The summit “showed America’s power when it engages and works with our partner allies on the issues.” Biden then remarked that “nothing can replace face-to-face negotiations for global cooperation.”

One trillion trees planted by 2030

“Recognizing the urgency to combat soil degradation and create new carbon sinks, we share the ambitious goal of collectively planting 1 trillion trees, focusing on the most degraded ecosystems on the planet.” This can be read in the final declaration of the G20 summit in Rome.

“We urge other countries to join forces with the G20 to achieve this global goal by 2030, including through climate projects, with the involvement of the private sector and civil society,” it reads.

Johnson: “If Glasgow fails, everything fails.”

“I’ll be clear, if Glasgow fails, everything fails.” British Prime Minister Boris Johnson said this with reference to COP26 at a press conference at the end of the G20 in Rome. “We have made progress in this G20, but we still have a way to go,” he added, “We haven’t talked for some time,” he commented on the Draghi-Erdogan thaw in the first handshake at the G20.

A comment from the Huffington Post

From the G20 in Rome, we expected more responses and concrete actions on the front of the fight against the climate crisis. We are disappointed with the Climate Pact signed today. This is an agreement that formalizes what has already been acquired in the past, without providing for concrete commitments on climate finance, starting with Italy which has not put on the table its fair contribution – at least 3 billion euros a year – for a total of 100 billion dollars promised 6 years ago in Paris as a collective commitment of industrialized countries to help the poorest in climate action. In short, at the Nuvola Rome, the G20 essentially discovered hot water in the fight against the climate crisis.

Now the hope is that in Glasgow, where COP26 opens today, the greats of the planet will be able to find an agreement to reach an ambitious new climate agreement capable of keeping the 1.5° C target alive of the Paris Agreement signed in 2015, but also to accelerate adaptation to climate change, cope with the losses and damage of the communities most affected by the emergency, but also and above all adequately finance the action of poor countries and complete the Rulebook, i.e., the implementing rules of the Agreement, to finally make it operational.

Agreement on trade and Afghanistan.

Distances on Libya.

Turkey brought a biography as a gift to sign the peace.

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About the author

Mario Masciullo - eTN Italy

Mario is a veteran in the travel industry.
His experience extends worldwide since 1960 when at the age of 21 he started exploring Japan, Hong Kong, and Thailand.
Mario has seen the World Tourism develop up to date and witnessed the
destruction of the root/testimony of the past of a good number of countries in favor of modernity/progress.
During the last 20 years Mario's travel experience has concentrated in South East Asia and of late included the Indian Sub Continent.

Part of Mario's work experience includes multi activities in the Civil Aviation
field concluded after organizing the kik off of for Malaysia Singapore Airlines in Italy as an Institutor and continued for 16 years in the role of Sales /Marketing Manager Italy for Singapore Airlines after the split of the two governments in October 1972.

Mario's official Journalist license is by the "National Order of Journalists Rome, Italy in 1977.

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