President Jacob Zuma arrived back from Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, on Saturday where he attended the Rio+20 United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development, the presidency said.
Issues including energy, the green economy, financing for development, water, poverty eradication, sustainable consumption and production were negotiated, spokesperson Mac Maharaj said in a statement.
Parties agreed to take action to advance sustainable development in those areas.
Key achievements central to South Africa’s negotiating position included a commitment to establishing a set of sustainable development goals that should be in keeping with the United Nations Development Agenda beyond 2015, he said.
It also included the establishment of an intergovernmental process, under the UN General Assembly, to assess financing needs and consider the effectiveness and consistency of existing financial instruments.
The purpose of the process, to be set up by 2014, was to create an effective sustainable development financing strategy.
“The conference outcomes have refocused the attention of world leaders to the daunting challenges of addressing global poverty, inequality, and the deterioration state of the environment and human development,” said Maharaj.
This would be done through adopting a political declaration and a framework for action.
The conference ran from June 20 to June 22.
Zuma was accompanied by several Cabinet members, including Water and Environmental Affairs Minister Edna Molewa and Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan. – Sapa