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China's President Hu speaks to UN on the enviroment

President Hu Jintao is making an unprecedented string of visits to United Nations summits as he leads a high-ranking Chinese delegation to the United States this week.

The president will be in New York for the UN Summit on Climate Change, the 64th annual UN General Assembly debate and a nuclear nonproliferation and disarmament summit of the UN Security Council from Monday through Thursday.

The president, along with his delegation, will be voicing China's positions, concerns and solutions on urgent global issues, such as reshaping the global governance on climate change, nuclear security and the financial recession. He will be delivering four speeches at the summits and General Assembly, according to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

He then treks to the G20 summit in Pittsburgh, Pa., on Thursday night. Hu is expected to attend the G20 summit through Friday.

The president is the first Chinese head of state in over 30 years to attend the UN general debate, according to Liu Zhenmin, China's deputy permanent representative to the UN, in an interview with Xinhua News Agency. It will be the first time that a Chinese head of state has attended so many UN summits for a single visit since the resumption of China's legitimate seat at the UN in 1971, Liu said.

Hu is also expected to hold talks with his US counterpart Barack Obama and a separate discussion with Japan's new Prime Minister Yukio Hatoyama, according to the ministry.

Together with Hu are Vice-Premier Wang Qishan, as well as ministers in charge of economic, financial and monetary policies, and China's top climate change envoy Xie Zhenhua.

The team of delegates arrived in the US last week to help pave the way for the UN climate change summit tomorrow (Tuesday, eastern standard time in the US).hold a press conference Tuesday night (eastern standard time in the US) after Hu finishes his speech on climate change Tuesday morning, said He Yafei, vice-minister of foreign affairs.

Scholars and officials are expecting an active and constructive role for China.

"I believe that the world is facing three pressing crises: the dysfunctional financial system, global warming and nuclear proliferation," said David Held, a professor on global governance from London School of Economics and Political Science, to China Daily.

Justin Lin, World Bank chief economist, said that China has already made big contributions to help the world shake off its economic recession when it announced the 4-trillion-yuan ($586 billion) stimulus package last November.

"And I also hope that China can play a role in tackling climate change and global warming," said Lin, insisting that technological and financial help from developed countries is essential to a global treaty on climate change.

Liu He, deputy director of the Office of the Central Leading Group on Finance and Economy Work, said the idea of carbon taxes and the recovery of the climate are expected to top the agenda of G20 leaders when they meet in Pittsburgh.




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