Indian Finance Minister Sitharaman calls for less talk, more action on tech transfers at COP28

Indian Finance Minister Sitharaman calls for less talk, more action on tech transfers at COP28

Ahead of the COP28 climate summit in the UAE, Indian Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman called for concrete action on climate funding and transfer of technology at an exclusive interaction at the India Global Forum Middle East and Africa 2023 (IGF ME&A).

During a virtual session at the inaugural session, the minister highlighted the actions undertaken by India towards the UN Climate Change Conference in Paris (COP21) agreement without relying on promises of funding from the developed economies.

Sitharaman said: “The Paris commitment given by us have been funded by us. We didn't wait for the hundred billion that is never on the table. A lot of talk, but no money coming on the table; no pathways to show how technology is going to be transferred.

“Particularly for developing and emerging market economies, funding this is going to be a huge challenge. So, I would think the conversations can happen, a lot of talk can happen but eventually COP28 should show the direction, both for transfer of technology and for the actual funding.”

On wider geopolitical currents and conflicts in the Middle East, the senior Indian minister said the ambitious India-Middle East-Europe Corridor (IMEC) announced by the US during the G20 Summit in New Delhi September remains as the long-term vision for the region.

She said: “It is a vision and a vision for long-term considerations, and it is going to be a long-term project. It's not just going to depend on one or the other major event pertaining to the area. It is going to be pursued because India has a very good relationship with each of the Middle East countries.

IMEC is not going to be dependent on one or the other major event of concern, but it is something on which the vision drives the implementation in the long run. So, it's going to face challenges alright, but it has got its own strengths, and countries who are directly or indirectly in connection with this project are absolutely clear that this, through India, is going to be critical for global trade, global partnerships and also making sure that this corridor will benefit each one of these countries.”

Under the theme ‘Unleashing Ambitions’, IGF ME&A convenes business leaders, policymakers, and thought leaders from India, the Middle East, and Africa to discuss opportunities for further collaboration and growth between these regions through a series of exclusive networking opportunities, panel discussions, and keynote speeches, covering a range of topics including trade, investment, innovation, technology, and sustainability.

IGF Founder & Chairman Manoj Ladwa said: "With India’s growing dependability as a trusted global partner, its expertise in digital innovation, and enterprise, the Middle East’s financial might and geographic position as a gateway between east and west, and the diversity, scale, and untapped human capital of Africa’s markets, there is every reason to work together to achieve our common goals of bringing about sustainable and rapid economic prosperity. Or to put it another way, what reason could there possibly be not to work together?"

UAE’s artificial intelligence (AI) Minister Omar Al Olama noted: “If anyone, whether it's in the UAE or another country says we're going to stop or not allow you to use these tools, how will it impact your quality of life? It's going to have a detrimental impact on your quality of life. This is the fact of the matter.

“That's why countries like India, for example, went down the non-conventional path of creating its own platforms, which I think is very smart and really the way that many countries of that size need to go. In that sense, AI is driving the economy. AI is impacting society.”

*Info: India Global Forum


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