Guest essay by Eric Worrall
China and India have issued a rare joint statement, demanding to know when the $100 billion green money they were promised is going to be delivered.
According to the official website of Prime Minister Modi;
6. The Two Sides [China and India] stress the equal importance and urgency of implementing the outcomes of the Bali Road Map in order to increase the pre-2020 ambition and build mutual trust amongst countries. The Two Sides urged the developed countries to raise their pre-2020 emission reduction targets and honour their commitment to provide 100bn US dollars per year by 2020 to developing countries.
Neither China nor India have made specific commitments on climate change, though Modi, who won the last election on the strength of his stunning economic track record as first minister of Gujarat, has repeatedly stressed that his priority is a strong pro-business economic model to alleviate poverty.
Leaving aside the hilarious possibility that the only way the West could raise $100 billion on short notice, is to borrow it from China, give it back to China, then pay interest on the money it had just returned to China, it seems likely that the joint statement represents a flat demand to see the cash. Loose talk about $100 billion climate cash might be enough to get China and India to the conference table. Keeping them there will take more than words.