The Emirates wanted to take advantage of the climate summit to sell oil

The United Arab Emirates planned to use meetings at the COP28 climate summit, which it is hosting later this week, to promote oil and gas deals with other countries, according to leaked documents obtained in cooperation with the Center for Climate Reporting BBC, a not-for-profit organisation.

The documents show that Sultan al-Jaber, host of the climate summit and head of oil company Adnoc, planned to discuss possible oil and gas deals with 15 countries, including China, Brazil and Germany.

A COP28 spokesperson rejects the claims and says the documents are “incorrect” and “unverified”, adding that the documents were not used in meetings related to the climate conference.

According to the United Nations Climate Convention’s code of conduct, elected and appointed officials must not use their roles to seek private gain or advantage, nor to represent the interests of other groups.

“Talking Points”

In the documents there are, among other things, proposed “discussion points”, such as e.g. with China where Adnoc, which is a state-owned oil company, should be “willing to consider international LNG opportunities in Mozambique, Canada and Australia,” writes the BBC.

Additionally, it is suggested that a Colombian minister be informed that Adnoc “is ready” to help Colombia develop its fossil fuel resources.

There will also be topics for 13 other countries, where it will be revealed that Adnoc wants to work with their governments to develop fossil fuel projects.

The BBC reportedly saw email exchanges in which COP28 staff were told that Adnoc and Masdar’s talking points “must still be included” in the minutes, but at COP28 they denied that this be true.

It’s also unclear how many times Jaber and his colleagues discussed these topics in meetings with foreign heads of state. However, 12 countries told the British National Broadcasting Company that either business activities were not discussed at the meetings or the meeting did not take place.

COP28 takes place from November 30 to December 12.

Adele Matthews

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