India is Norway's important ally on environment: Minister

Last Updated: Fri, Feb 01, 2013 09:10 hrs

New Delhi, Feb 1 (IANS) India is an important ally of Norway on environment and related issues, says the country's Indian-born Deputy Minister for International Development Arvinn E. Gadgil.

"India is an important ally for all our initiatives in sustainability, development and growth. Norway hopes that India will succeed in its quest for high inclusive and sustainable economic and social growth," a Norwegian embassy statement Friday quoted Gadgil, who is leading his country's delegation at the Delhi Sustainable Development Summit (DSDS) 2013, as saying.

The summit, which began Thursday, ends on Saturday.

"We want to be an even closer partner of India, actively contributing within areas where it has something to offer, based on mutual interest and respect, and a long historical friendship," added Gadgil, who will speak on energy, water and food security.

He will also participate in a thematic consultation on energy related to the United Nations' post-2015 Development Agenda.

"Sustainable development was defined by the Brundtland Report released in 1987, headed by our former prime minister Gro Brundtland, and this shows the seriousness and importance given to the issue of sustainable development by Norway," Gadgil said.

DSDS was an international platform exchanging knowledge "on all aspects of sustainable development", he said. "Over the years, it has emerged as one of the most leading forums on issues of global sustainability and we are happy to be associated with this prestigious event," he added.

The Norwegian delegation also includes representatives from the ministries of foreign affairs and environment, the Research Council Norway and Norad, the Norwegian Agency for Development Cooperation.

Additionally, as part of the climate change awareness, the Norwegian embassy here has also organised a painting exhibition for children by 18 artists from Tanzania and Zanzibar titled The Animals' Climate Panel which is on display at the Chinmaya Bhawan here.

"The exhibition focuses on children and aims to create an understanding of the alarming problem of global warming and climate change in an easy and interactive way," the statement said.

Norway has been an active participant at the DSDS, "which provides a good platform for the exchange of international views on global issues concerning environment and sustainability", it added.

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