Page last updated at 04:16 GMT, Tuesday, 8 July 2008 05:16 UK

Climate focus for G8 summit talks

What is hoped for from the G8 talks

World leaders are focusing on climate change and the global economy on day two of a key meeting in Japan.

Last year's Group of Eight industrialised nations summit pledged to "seriously consider" carbon emissions cuts of 50% by 2050.

The EU and Japan want leaders to adopt a stronger statement that includes interim targets.

Monday's talks were dominated by soaring food and fuel prices, and their effect on the world's poorest people.

Seven African leaders joined the summit to highlight their concerns.

Campaigners, meanwhile, accused G8 leaders of falling behind on pledges to double aid to the continent.

Climate targets

The summit is taking place in Toyako, on the Japanese island of Hokkaido.

BBC map

Leaders from the G8 nations - Britain, Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, Russia and the United States - are being joined by counterparts from some 15 other countries.

They are expected to issue a series of statements later in the day.

On Monday, negotiators worked late into the night to agree a statement on climate change, Reuters news agency reported.

Some countries want a deal on a long-term global goal for emissions cuts - but there are divisions over what targets should be set and what would be expected of developing countries.

The US says it will not commit to binding targets unless China and India agree to rein in emissions too.

Wheat grains in farmer's hands
Biofuels can be made from crops like wheat and rapeseed

The leaders are also expected to discuss biofuels, amid concern that the rise in their use is driving food prices up.

On Monday World Bank President Robert Zoellick called for reform of biofuel policies in rich countries, urging them to grow more food to feed the hungry.

He laid particular blame on fuels made from corn and rapeseed produced in the US and the EU.

"The US and Europe also need to take action to reduce mandates, subsidies and tariffs benefiting grain and oil seed biofuels that take food off the table for millions," he said.

Leaders were also expected to discuss rising energy prices, global inflation and stabilising financial markets, officials said.

The summit is also expected to release a statement on the elections in Zimbabwe, which President George W Bush on Monday described as a sham.


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