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The president of the UN Climate Change Conference, also known as COP26, to be held in Glasgow later this year, and UK government’s climate chief Alok Sharma is to visit India next week to meet the leaders of a country that is the biggest emitter of greenhouse gases after the US and China.

This visit comes in the backdrop of India resisting the pressure of declaring a net zero emission goal. Instead, India has called out nations on their carbon neutral intent announcements and termed it as “meaningless".

“Alok Sharma is expected to visit India next week," said an Indian government official requesting anonymity.

The UN’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) on Monday said more frequent and intense extreme weather events will impact lives, livelihoods and businesses in India and elsewhere in South Asia.

Sharma was earlier the UK’s secretary of state for business, energy and industrial dtrategy and also secretary of dtate at the Department for International Development.

“The UK is committed to working closely with our partners in India to ensure a successful outcome at COP26 in Glasgow this November. As part of this, COP26 President Designate Alok Sharma visited India earlier this year when he met with PM Modi, and has had successful interactions since on various international fora. We do not have any further update on future visits to India at this time," a British High Commission spokesperson in New Delhi said in an emailed response.

Queries emailed to United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) secretariat spokesperson on Wednesday evening weren’t immediately answered.

In his previous visit to India in February this year, Sharma met Prime Minister Narendra Modi and other senior cabinet ministers including then environment, forest and climate change minister Prakash Javadekar, external affairs minister Subrahmanyam Jaishankar, power and new and renewable energy minister Raj Kumar Singh and Sherpa to the G7 and G20 Suresh Prabhu.

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