China opposes vaccine nationality, calls for compassion in distribution
Friday, February 19th, 2021
Undoubtedly, 2020 was a watershed year in human history. The sudden emergence of the COVID-19 pandemic triggered a global crisis, putting a halt to cross-border travels and stifling global growth. Sadly, anachronistic practices of unilateralism and protectionism escalated, driven by resurgent power politics and Cold-War mentality.
More than ever before, human development is confronted with unprecedented risks and challenges in an increasingly fluid and changing world. Currently there is nowhere this scenario is more evident than in the distribution of the coronavirus vaccines. According to the United Nations, just 10 countries have administered more than 75 percent of COVID-19 vaccinations.
Sadly. some countries have chosen to play politics with the pandemic, fanning the flames of prejudice, rejecting science and pushing out disinformation in an effort to politicize the pandemic. Such selfish countries are using the force of the government to make sure their own people get vaccinated first, ignoring other countries or regions where the need may be dire due to poor socio-economic conditions.
China sees the global fight against COVID-19 not as a competition but more like a relay race in which humanity as a whole help each other defeat a common enemy. Since mid-2020 Chinese President Xi Jinping has regularly promised that Chinese vaccines will be a global public good and that China would help realize vaccine accessibility and affordability in developing countries.
In a speech to the 73rd session of the World Health Assembly in May 2020, Xi pledged for greater international cooperation in the fight against the epidemic: "COVID-19 vaccine development and deployment in China, when available, will be made a global public good, which will be China's contribution to ensuring vaccine accessibility and affordability in developing countries."
Addressing a virtual meeting of the United Nations Security Council (UNSC) concerning the COVID-19 vaccine distribution on Wednesday, Chinese State Councilor and Foreign Minister Wang Yi said that the world should come together to reject vaccine nationalism, promote fair and equitable distribution of vaccines, particularly make them accessible and affordable for developing countries, including those in conflicts.
Over the past year, the Chinese people stood with the world in fighting the pandemic. During the most challenging time of China's battle against COVID-19, 77 countries and 12 international organizations extended us a helping hand, leaving behind many touching stories that give true meaning to the word "community".
When the virus hit other parts of the world, China cooperated closely with the World Health Organization and the international community, and launched the largest global emergency humanitarian campaign in its history. China has helped over 150 countries and 13 international organizations to help bring the world together in defeating the virus.
China has pledged to stand in solidarity with countries across the globe to secure a decisive victory against COVID-19. The world won't be safe until the virus is defeated in each and every country. China will continue to do its best to assist countries in need. The country has pledged to on its commitment of making vaccines a global public good, help achieve vaccine accessibility and affordability in developing countries, and steadily cement the strong line of defence against the virus globally.
China has decided to provide 10 million COVID-19 vaccine doses to COVAX to meet the urgent needs of developing countries. It has donated vaccines to 53 developing countries, and has exported or is in the process of exporting vaccines to 22 countries. A shipment of 200,000 doses of the Sinopharm COVID-19 vaccine donated by China arrived in Zimbabwe Monday. Peru received 700,000 more doses of the Sinopharm vaccine Saturday after receiving the first shipment from the Chinese pharmaceutical firm a week ago. Ultimately, it is only through science, reason and a humanitarian spirit that the world will continue to record more progress in fighting Covid-19.