Something really WAS rotten in Denmark

9 December 2009

In recent days, rumours have been flying and clouding the negotiations, but now it’s out in the open: the infamous “Danish text” has seen the light of day. For long we have been told that there is no such thing as a Danish text, but ECO now understands, as does the world, that there was indeed a text that was meant as a substitute for a real agreement. What’s also clear is that the process for developing it was fatally flawed, and as often happens with a flawed process, this one exploded in the hands of its maker. It is now time for Danish Prime Minister Lokke Rasmussen (pictured) to learn the lesson and move on.

Meanwhile, Connie Hedegaard’s first words in her speech in the opening plenary were: “I will listen and I will be transparent”. Could there be something less rotten to be expected in Denmark?

ECO expects the Danish Prime Minister to lock it up and hide away the key. And let us allow the negotiations to continue as a transparent and open process in which all Parties, including the most impoverished and vulnerable countries, have a voice that cannot be ignored.  With the voices of the vulnerable countries in the choir, we have a far better chance of getting a fair, equitable, ambitious and binding outcome.

The leaked text is neither fair, nor ambitious. Further it would not deliver on the finance or technology needed in support to developing countries. The document that has now seen the light of day has another fatal flaw – it isn’t a credible stepping stone to a legally binding outcome.

The Danish text has given us a warning of how ugly it can get, when countries begin to negotiate with each other in the wrong direction. ECO looks forward to a new day, where negotiators and ministers challenge each other to achieve a truly fair, ambitious and binding agreement.

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