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New Zealand to push for emission commitments at UN climate change talks

WELLINGTON, Nov. 30 — New Zealand Trade Minister Time Groser is to press for a comprehensive global agreement on emission cuts at an international government conference in South Africa next month.

Groser, also the Minister Responsible for International Climate Change Negotiations, is to attend the annual ministerial conference of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change in Durban from Dec. 1 to 11.

He said in a statement Wednesday that New Zealand would be looking for progress towards a comprehensive global agreement with binding emission-reduction commitments.

"These commitments need to include all developed countries as well as advanced and major-emitting developing countries," he said.

"Only a comprehensive agreement will make a real difference to climate change."

Durban will be the first full meeting at ministerial level since Cancun meeting, and will build on the outcomes of the 2010 meeting.

New Zealand Climate Change Minister Nick Smith will travel to Durban on Dec. 4 to join Groser for the Ministerial segment of the conference.

A key question for Durban was whether countries agreed to a second commitment period under the Kyoto Protocol, said Groser.

"Regardless of the outcome on Kyoto, our work at Durban will mark a transition towards the longer-term outcome of a comprehensive global agreement. There is still strong political leadership and commitment to tackling this global issue, and Durban needs to send that message," Groser said. (PNA/Xinhua) FFC/utb

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