News flash: World leaders don’t, and won’t, take Donald Trump seriously.
Voicing a rare opinion on a foreign election, on Tuesday the Chinese government criticized U.S. presidential candidate Donald Trump’s plan to back out of a global climate change pact.
Trump has said he will ignore the Paris Agreement, a global deal between almost 200 governments to fight climate change, which goes into effect this Friday.
China’s main climate change negotiator, Xie Zhenhua, told reporters Tuesday morning that intelligent leaders make policy decisions that reflect global trends, and that as a whole, the world is striking a balance between environmental protection and economic growth, according to Reuters.
“If they resist this trend, I don’t think they’ll win the support of their people, and their country’s economic and social progress will also be affected,” Zhenhua, China’s representative at the United Nations Climate Change Conference and former vice-chairman of the National Development and Reform Commission, said. “I believe a wise political leader should take policy stances that conform with global trends.”
Regarding its own commitments to the climate pact, Zhenhua said it was too early to say if China’s coal consumption — which has begun to decline alongside its economy — has peaked for good.
China is planning to launch a carbon trading scheme by 2017, and has already traded 120 million carbon allowances amounting to $472.29 million in pilot programs.
“It will take time for the market to be fully operational, but once it’s operational, it’ll be the largest carbon trading market in the world,” said Xie.
While the Chinese government has largely avoided commenting on the U.S. presidential elections, some industry experts have voiced concerns over how Trump’s election may alter U.S.-China relations.
“We may need to be ready to deal with partial deterioration of Sino-US economic relations,” He Fan from the Chongyang Finance Institute at Renmin University of China said.
In April, China’s Finance Minister Lou Jiwei described the Trump as “an irrational type,” due to his tariffs proposal on Chinese imports. He added that the U.S. “wouldn’t be entitled to world leadership” if it followed Trump’s proposed trade policies toward China.
Regarding the media, the Brookings Institute reported that China has described Trump as a “big mouth,” “clown” and someone who is just “talking nonsense.”
Next, read about how Donald Trump’s misconduct toward women stems beyond “Locker Room Talk,” according to multiple lawsuits, before checking out the time Putin’s crony told Americans that Trump better win, or they face nuclear war.