|Statement by Ambassador Dai Bing at Meeting of the Group of Friends of Solidarity for Global Health Security|
At the outset, I thank the Republic of Korea and other co-chairs for convening this meeting. I have listened carefully to all the panelists and learned a lot. China takes note of the main report of IPPR. We are carefully studying it. Here, I would like to offer a few initial thoughts:
First, coordinated response to COVID-19 is much needed as a matter of urgency. One year after the outbreak, the pandemic has rebounded in many countries. An average of 700,000 new cases are being confirmed per day, with more than 10,000 deaths worldwide. The IPPR report points out that a priority is to end illness and deaths from COVID-19. It also calls for five immediate actions to be taken. Every country should apply public health measures systematically and rigorously. In the face of the proliferation of variants and increasing cross-border transmission, it’s urgent for countries to strengthen coordinated response strategies and enhance the effectiveness of cooperation in combating the pandemic.
Second, fair distribution of vaccines is the key. With 82% of vaccines currently administered in high-income countries and only 0.3% in low-income countries, the “vaccine divide” will have a serious impact on the global fight against the pandemic. The report calls on high-income countries to provide vaccines to low- and middle-income countries through COVAX, including at least 1 billion doses no later than 1 September 2021 and more than 2 billion doses by mid-2022. It also calls for voluntary licensing and technology transfer for COVID-19 vaccines, as well as more financial support from developed countries to ACT-A in 2021. We hope these measures will soon be implemented.
Third, strengthening the global health governance system is a long-term solution. The international community should, under the leadership of the UN and the WHO, continue to strengthen the global health governance system, pay particular attention to the special difficulties faced by developing countries, and increase support through financial and technical assistance.
China has been actively participating in international cooperation to combat COVID-19. China has provided vaccine assistance to over 80 countries and 3 international organizations and exported vaccines to over 50 countries. We are also working with more than 10 developing countries on technological transfer and cooperative production of vaccines. Recently, the Sinopharm vaccine was listed for emergency use by the WHO, and we are working to provide doses to COVAX.
China will continue to support the international community, especially developing countries, in their efforts to combat the pandemic. Let’s work together to defeat the virus and to build a global community of health for all.