European Official visits Colombia to Discussions on Deforestation in Amazon
Jorge Gil Ángel Bogotá, Jan 27 (EFE) – Addressing deforestation in the Amazon is not as simple as stopping the import of products from Colombia and Brazil produced in the region, Executive Vice President of the European Commission Frans Timmermans said during a three day visit to the country.
Instead, Timmermans proposed that sustainable production should be stimulated in the area, with assistance given to farmers and other producers to ensure that practice is undertaken in a sustainable way.
The senior European official is in Colombia to prepare for the COP28 climate summit which will take place at the end of the year in Dubai and is discussing issues such as the protection of nature and biodiversity, the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions, and the transition to clean energy with authorities, civil society, and President Gustavo Petro.
Although the main objective of creating cooperative strategies to combat the climate crisis is in focus, Timmermans adds that those involved in illegal deforestation, gold extraction, and other dangerous activities must be held accountable to that same effort. This includes parties overseas who buy the products made by these criminals.
The agenda for Colombia, which began on Wednesday, also aims to set up the best conditions for private economy and technology transfer from Europe so that the country can be part of the transition. The new economic opportunities must be coupled with the fight against poverty and climate change in order to make a fair transition to a new economy.
Finally, Timmermans expressed hope that with these cooperative arrangements, the distance between Europe and Latin America can be closes, as all parties understand that this transition must take into account the needs of those in vulnerable positions.