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Climate Change Conference to Cost US$12 Million

Government Says Bali Will Profit from Hosting World Gathering to Save the Planet in December.

(10/27/2007) Tempo Interaktif reports that the Indonesian Government will spend an estimated Rp. 114 billion (approximately US$12.4 million) in hosting the United Nations Framework on Climate Change Conference (UNFCCC) to be held in Bali this December. The funds will reportedly be provided via discretionary budgets administered by President's office.

The Minister for the Environment, Rachmat Witoelar, told the press that the budget of Rp. 114 billion, an amount not provided for in the 2007 State Budget, would be funded through a bridging loan provided through the President's office. Witoelar claimed that the Nation will profit financially by hosting the conference expected to bring to Bali over 10,000 people form 189 countries to Bali. The Minister estimates the total cost of the conference will be US$70 million, with the remaining balance covered directly by accommodation and related costs expended delegates and observers.

Witoelar said that the UNFCCC's most fundamental task will be to lay the foundations for a global commitment to provide funds needed to preserve tropical rain forests.

Describing the conference organization, Witoelar said U.N. personnel will provide security for the Nusa Dua Complex in Bali. "That area (Nusa Dua) will become the UN zone, like the UN Headquarters in New York, with 'blue beret' personnel providing security, but overall sovereignty resting with us (the Indonesian government)," he explained.

President Yudhoyono has called on organizers to be thorough in their preparations for the UNFCCC, saying a successful conference will assist Indonesian tourism and the economy in general.

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