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France, US to propose ban on private finance to coal-fired plants at COP28

(Reuters, 21 Nov 2023) France, backed by the United States, plans to seek a halt to private financing for coal-based power plants during the U.N. climate conference later this month, three sources familiar with the deliberations told Reuters in India and Europe.

The plan, which was communicated to India earlier this month, will deepen divisions at the COP28 summit in Dubai running from Nov. 30 to Dec. 12, with India and China opposed to any attempt to block construction of coal-fired power stations for their energy-hungry economies.

France's minister of state for development Chrysoula Zacharopoulou told the Indian government about the plan, called the "New Coal Exclusion Policy", for private financial institutions and insurance companies, two Indian officials said.

The plan to stop private financing for coal-fired power plants has not been previously reported.

A spokesman for Zacharopoulou did not directly comment on emailed queries from Reuters but said the question of financial investments in coal had been discussed at several different multilateral forums over the past few years.

India's environment, power and renewable energy, coal, external affairs and information ministries, the OECD and the French embassy in New Delhi did not respond to Reuters' requests for comment.

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Reuters, 21 Nov 2023: France, US to propose ban on private finance to coal-fired plants at COP28