On May 8, Minister Li Ganjie met with Chairman of Paulson Institute Henry Paulson in Beijing. The two sides had in-depth discussions on advancing the ecological and environmental protection.
Mr. Paulson has come on multiple trips to China for visits and communications over the past few years, providing support for the development of China's ecological and environmental protection undertaking, said Li. The two sides have maintained good communications, enhanced mutual understanding, and laid a solid foundation for future cooperation.
The institutional reform plan of the State Council has integrated the original functions of MEP and relevant functions of six other State departments to establish the Ministry of Ecology and Environment. The new ministry centralizes the ecological and environmental protection functions scattered across the cabinet and exercises the ecological conservation, and urban and rural pollution regulation and compliance inspection functions. It is a major step taken by the Chinese Government to advance the modernization of the ecological and environmental governance system and capacities and is very important for strengthening environmental pollution control, safeguarding the national ecological security, and building a beautiful China.
The Chinese Government has proposed to secure a victory over pollution and made plans for waging seven hallmark battles, including winning the battle to defend the blue skies, and putting up a good fight for the control of the pollution by diesel-fuel trucks, the treatment of dark and odorous waters in the urban areas, the integrated management of the Bohai Sea, the protection and restoration of the Yangtze River, the protection of the source water, and the control of pollution in the agricultural sector and rural areas, in order to vigorously address the pressing ecological and environmental issues, and provide ecological and environmental support for securing a victory in completing the building of a moderately prosperous society. The Chinese side appreciated what the Paulson Foundation has achieved in the control of watershed pollution, the response to climate change, and green financing, and hoped that the two sides would conduct cooperation, explore the policy measures for the green development and integrated environmental management of the Yangtze River Basin, and implement the major strategic thought of President Xi Jinping about launching major environmental protection projects instead of development projects in this basin.
The two sides also exchanged views on the development of national parks, the global biodiversity protection, the green "belt and road" initiative, and other issues of common concern.
Mr. Paulson congratulated Li on the foundation of the new Ministry and spoke highly of the achievements China has made in promoting ecological progress and strengthening ecological and environmental protection over the past few years. He also shared the progress made by the Paulson Foundation in protecting the environment and would like to deepen and extend its cooperation with China in the area of ecological and environmental protection.