Joint Press Release of the Second Vice Ministers' Special Meeting on COVID-19 Between the People's Republic of China and Pacific Island Countries

2020-12-01 11:00

On November 30, 2020, China and Pacific Island Countries held the second vice ministers' special meeting on COVID-19 via video link. Vice Foreign Minister Zheng Zeguang of China and Foreign Minister Jeremiah Manele of Solomon Islands co-chaired the meeting.

The Pacific Island Countries present at the meeting include: Fiji, Samoa, Papua New Guinea, Vanuatu, the Federated States of Micronesia, Cook Islands, Tonga, Niue, Solomon Islands, and Kiribati.

1. The two sides reviewed the significant achievements of their cooperation on combating COVID-19, especially since the first vice ministers' special meeting on COVID-19 on May 13, 2020, and shared the view that the comprehensive strategic partnership between China and Pacific Island Countries has been deepened and developed through such cooperation.

2. The Pacific Island Countries applauded China's major strategic achievements in containing the COVID-19 outbreak and its progress in recovering socio-economic development, and expressed gratitude for China's assistance in fighting the virus. China commended the Pacific Island Countries for taking active and effective measures to control the spread of COVID-19, and expressed appreciation for their invaluable support to China's COVID-19 response efforts.

3. The two sides reaffirmed their mutual support on issues involving each other's core interests and major concerns, and stressed that countries should respect each other's sovereignty and territorial integrity, respect each other's choice of development path. The Pacific Island Countries reaffirmed to uphold the One-China principle.

4. The two sides reaffirmed their commitment to multilateralism and the UN-centered international system, applauded and welcomed the adoption of the resolution on "comprehensive and coordinated response to the corona-virus disease (COVID-19) pandemic" by the 74th session of the UN General Assembly, and called on the international community to work in solidarity and collaboration to contain the spread of COVID-19 and protect people's health and well-being. The two sides highly appreciated the leadership role of the World Health Organization in coordinating the global response to COVID-19, and reaffirmed their opposition to any attempt of stigmatization, politicizing or mislabeling the pandemic.

5. The two sides agreed to deepen cooperation and strengthen multilateral coordination on fighting COVID-19. China reaffirmed the commitment of making the development and deployment of COVID-19 vaccine, when available, a global public good, as part of its contribution to vaccine accessibility and affordability in developing countries, including Pacific Island Countries.

6. The two sides called for efforts to keep global industrial and supply chains stable and open, and support the building of an open world economy. The two sides agreed to align their development strategies for the "post COVID-19 era" under the principle of wide consultation, joint contribution and shared benefits, expand practical cooperation within the framework of the "Belt and Road Initiative" and promote people-to-people and sub-national exchanges, with a view to boosting economic recovery and achieving common development.

7. China appreciates the dual challenges of COVID-19 and climate change faced by Pacific Island Countries, and will continue to provide them with assistance to the best of its ability. The two sides call on the international community to provide more material, technical, financial and humanitarian support to Pacific Island Countries to help them achieve independent and sustainable development.