Minister of Petroleum and Mineral Affairs Ali Al-Naimi led the Saudi delegation to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change currently underway in Bali, Indonesia.
The two-week conference, which began December 3, aims to reach an international agreement on concrete steps to be taken after the end of the Kyoto Protocol’s first commitment period in 2012. Participants included representatives of over 180 countries, observers from intergovernmental and nongovernmental organizations as well as the media.
In remarks to the conference, Al-Naimi reiterated Saudi Arabia’s willingness to work towards signing an international agreement on climate change that takes into account the interests of all parties, especially developing nations, by the end of 2009.
The Saudi oil minister criticized hefty taxes on petroleum products as an impractical way to decrease gas emissions and address climate change issues. He and urged the international community to continue using fossil fuels in a clean manner that reduces pollution without placing a burden on the international economy or the economies of developing countries that export petroleum.