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Parliamentary question - E-005570/2021(ASW)Parliamentary question

Answer given by Executive Vice-President Timmermans on behalf of the European Commission

On 28 October 2021, China submitted its updated Nationally Determined Contribution (NDC) to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change. The main elements of this submission are the commitments to peak CO2 emissions by 2030 and to achieve carbon neutrality by 2060 as well as engagements to improve energy efficiency, reduce fossil fuels and increase renewable energy.

While the Chinese mitigation pledges can be considered presenting a lower ambition level than those of the EU and while details remain to be clarified, they constitute a big step forward compared to previous pledges and are among the most ambitious pledges by emerging countries.

The EU diplomatic effort has been instrumental in achieving this result and the Commission will pursue its efforts working with China and other partners towards achieving a higher ambition, including by phasing out coal as early as possible. One concrete area of EU-China cooperation to achieve this is the work on emissions trading.

In a carbon-constrained world, economies relying on fossil fuels, and in particular coal, will not be more competitive than economies decarbonising faster.

The Commission’s ‘Fit for 55’ package includes a proposal for a Carbon Border Adjustment Mechanism (CBAM) aiming at avoiding carbon leakage by equalising the price of carbon between domestic products and imports in a World Trade Organisation-compatible way; this will ensure that European emission reductions contribute to a global emissions decline.

In addition, CBAM includes incentives for partner countries such as China to step up their carbon pricing policies and for businesses in partner countries to reduce their emissions.

Last updated: 24 February 2022
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