EU summit to discuss climate change, Lisbon Treaty

21:28, October 29, 2009      

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Leaders of 27 European Union (EU) member states will meet here on Thursday for a two-day summit to discuss climate change financing, and EU institutional and economic issues.

Unifying the EU member states behind a common vision on climate change, and the EU's institutional future under the renewed Lisbon Treaty was on top of summit's agenda, according to Swedish Prime Minister Fredrik Reinfeldt's invitation letter to the leaders.

The first session of the summit will be focused on "the make-or-break" issue of climate financing to help poor countries fight climate change.

"Just weeks away from the opening of the Copenhagen Conference, it is more than ever necessary (for the EU) to continue playing a leading role and contribute to a global and ambitious climate agreement," said the letter.

"The Union has a strong negotiating position on issues such as technology transfer, adaptation, mitigation and good governance," it said. "However, it is clear that a deal on financing will be central to reaching agreement in Copenhagen."

The Swedish presidency hopes that it will be possible to agree on an EU mandate on climate financing ahead of the UN Climate Change Conference in Copenhagen in December.

The leaders will also discuss the Treaty of Lisbon on EU reform, which has been ratified by all member states except the Czech Republic. Without a full ratification, a permanent president of the European Council (EC) cannot be elected at the summit.

Czech President Vaclav Klaus has demanded the Czech Republic be given the same status already granted to Britain and Poland in relation to the Treaty's Charter of Fundamental Rights.

At the summit, the majority of preparations required for the treaty to take effect must be concluded, such as new EC working procedures. Convening states are likely to give their support to a report laying the foundations for a future European external relations service.

The EU ministers for foreign affairs will have a separate dinner on Thursday, during which the EU's role as a global actor will be the focus.

On economic issues, the leaders will discuss the agreement on financial regulations to address the economic and financial crisis.

The need to increase efforts to prevent irregular immigration and the EU Baltic Sea Strategy will also be included in the summit discussions.

Source: Xinhua
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