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COP26 president: China’s Xi Jinping yet to confirm attendance at climate change talks

Chinese President Xi Jinping speaks via video link at the CPC and World Political Parties Summit, held to commemorate the 100th founding anniversary of Communist Party of China (CPC), in Beijing, China in this still image taken from a video July 6, 2021. CCTV via Reuters TV

China’s Xi Jinping is yet to commit to attending this year’s climate change summit in Glasgow, COP26 President Alok Sharma has admitted.

Earlier this month, Mr Sharma held two days of talks in China ahead of the international summit being hosted by the UK in November.

But, asked on Sky News’ Trevor Phillips On Sunday show if Chinese president Mr Xi had committed to being in Scotland for the gathering of world leaders, Mr Sharma said: “No, not yet.”

He also admitted that China would be “key” to the climate change talks, as the country is one of the world’s biggest polluters.

“There is no doubt that China is going to be part of the key to all of this,” Mr Sharma said.

“They are the biggest emitter in the world.

“What President Xi Jinping has said is that they are going to strictly restrict the use of coal in this next five-year period, from 2026 they are going to phase down.

“But we want to see the detail of that. That is what we are pressing them.

“They have said to me they want the COP26 to be a success. The ball is in their court.

“We want them to come forward and make it a success together with the rest of the world.”

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