Climate change is one of the most pressing challenges the world faces today. It affects all aspects of the development agenda, from poverty alleviation to healthcare, from clean water to clean energy, and from disaster risk reduction to economic growth. Climate change sets back development gains. It is the single greatest threat to achieving a world of hope, tolerance and social justice.
At the 11th ASEM Summit it Ulaanbaatar last July, ASEM Leaders “welcomed the adoption in 2015 of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, the Addis Ababa Action Agenda, the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction and the Paris Agreement as milestone documents aimed at building an inclusive, sustainable and prosperous future for all people and the planet”. As they acknowledged “that urgent and decisive action to translate the contributions into practice will bring about a tangible difference and transform the global economy to low greenhouse gas emission and climate resilient development, Leaders agreed to work together towards the timely and full implementation of the goals set in these documents at the national, regional and global levels, reflecting the balance and principles agreed in these agreements”.
Against this background, the “ASEM Conference on Climate Action to Achieving the Sustainable Development Goals – Ways Forward” responses directly to the commitment of our Leaders. In particular, this event is designed to provide a platform for ASEM members to exchange policy and best practices of transforming those commitments into climate actions to effectively implement the Paris Agreement and SDGs at global, regional and local levels. Furthermore, the Conference would also highlight international cooperation in tackling issues of climate change and promote effective ASEM cooperation on this matter in the time to come.