French President Hollande in China to discuss climate change, economy


French President Francois Hollande on Monday arrived in China, where he was expected to seek China’s support for a new climate change deal in Paris in December.

Hollande’s first stop on his two-day visit was in south-west municipality of Chongqing to tour a Sino-French sewage treatment plant, the official People’s Daily reported.

“I see the success of Sino-French cooperation, demonstrating the efforts made by both countries to improve the environment,” reported Hollande as saying.

Hollande arrived in Beijing Monday evening to meet with Chinese President Xi Jinping, the French embassy told dpa.

On Tuesday, Hollande was to meet with Chinese Premier Li Keqiang to discuss economic issues and climate change, the embassy said.

The French president’s visit came a few days after German Chancellor Angela Merkel visited China and after Xi visited Britain in mid-October.

The United Nations Climate Change Conference will be held in Paris from November 30 to December 11.

The UN has asked governments to propose targets to limit greenhouse gas emissions from 2020, when current commitments expire.

China and the United States are the two biggest emitters of CO2, accounting for over one-third of global greenhouse gas emissions.

China has not set a national cap on emissions levels, but said last year that CO2 emissions would peak around 2030, with non-fossil fuel sources making up 20 per cent of energy sources by then.