Latest Rio+20 draft document talks end in deadlock

    Sha Zuzkang, undersecretary-general for economic and social affairs, speaks during the launch of "Rio+20: The Future We Want." Only 20 percent of the Rio+20 draft outcome document has been agreed upon during the third informal-informal pre-summit talks in New York. Photo by: Eskinder Debebe / UN

    Will negotiators finish the outcome document for the Rio+20 conference in time for the June 20-22 meeting in Brazil?

    The result of the third “informal-informal” pre-summit talks led by a special preparatory committee suggests a less than favorable scenario. The negotiations, held May 29 to June 2 in New York, ended in a deadlock with only 20 percent of the draft outcome document agreed upon, IPS News says.

    Among remaining sticking points are the focus areas of the proposed Sustainable Development Goals and how to ensure these goals integrate the social, environmental and economic aspects of sustainable development.

    The task of finalizing the outcome document, dubbed “Future We Want,” now falls to participants of a final June 13-15 preparatory committee session in Brazil. If this meeting still fails to produce a text that all countries will agree to, world leaders are expected to step in to finalize the document.

    Kim Sook, co-chair of the preparatory committee, remains positive the group will be able to produce “an outcome document that would be worthy of our heads of state and government signing.” Rio+20 Secretary-General Sha Zukang is similarly optimistic, citing his observation of “a real willingness to find common ground.”

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    About the author

    • Ivy Mungcal

      As former senior staff writer, Ivy Mungcal contributed to several Devex publications. Her focus is on breaking news, and in particular on global aid reform and trends in the United States, Europe, the Caribbean, and the Americas. Before joining Devex in 2009, Ivy produced specialized content for U.S. and U.K.-based business websites.

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