UAE and China discuss ways to fight the spread of Covid-19

"We are all in this together" says Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed, Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Co-operation

Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed Al Nahyan Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation. Courtesy MoFAIC
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The UAE and China have held a video conference to discuss ways to combat the spread of Covid-19.

Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed, Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Co-operation, who headed the UAE delegation, said working together and solidarity were key factors in preventing the virus from spreading further.

He also thanked Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi for his efforts in arranging the Belt and Road Initiative video conference.

He expressed his appreciation for the support and leadership provided to the global community during the pandemic by the United Nations and the World Health Organisation (WHO).

"We highly value the role played by China in dealing with the repercussions of Covid-19 and in hosting this international conference,” said Sheikh Abdullah.

“We also stress the great importance of the Belt and Road initiative and acknowledge the role it has been playing in enhancing international cooperation and stimulating economic growth in vital sectors."

Sheikh Abdullah said that the UAE chose, at an early stage, to undertake aggressive preventative actions to address the threat posed by the virus.

The UAE has conducted more than three million coronavirus tests, giving it "one of the highest per-capita testing rates for Covid-19 in the world,” he said.

“It has expanded and reallocated medical resources in order to respond quickly, and has sought to be as transparent as possible in keeping the public well informed of the risks at hand.”

Sheikh Abdullah said that the country, over recent weeks, has observed a slowdown in the spread of the virus and moved beyond the worst stages of this crisis.

“We remain confident that we have moved beyond the worst stages of this crisis, though given the extraordinary nature of the threat from Covid-19, ongoing vigilance is necessary,” he said.

He referred to the UAE’s achievements in fighting this virus, saying that they could not have taken place "without the support of many of the countries and organisations participating in the video conference”.

“This co-operation and solidarity underlines a key element in the fight against Covid-19 - we are all in this together,” he said.

“Recognition of this ‘togetherness’ pervades all elements of the UAE’s broader approach to Covid-19.”

Sheikh Abdullah said that the UAE has provided over 935 metric tons of medical supplies to 66 countries to bolster efforts to curb the spread of the virus.

The aid will assist close to 900,000 medical professionals in the process.

"In these endeavours, the UAE remains at the forefront in providing logistical support for WHO operations, and continues to assist in the transportation of medical supplies to a number of at-risk countries," he said.

He added the UAE is also doing all it can to provide the WHO with much needed Covid-19 testing kits in light of the scarcity of testing supplies in several countries.

"Fundamentally, the UAE Government believes all countries must engage closely in the fight against Covid-19,” said Sheikh Abdullah.

“We cannot afford to retreat within our borders.

“In this respect, the Belt and Road Initiative offers a firm foundation to enhance the prospects of multilateralism during this challenging period."

Sheikh Abdullah said that as a country whose prosperity relies upon free movement and open trade, the UAE stands ready to do all it can to assist in developing a global economic and political architecture that promotes inclusiveness, resilience, and co-operation.

He concluded by saying that in the UAE’s view, Covid-19 has strengthened rather than undermined the benefits of multilateralism, and highlighted the vital need for all countries to avoid pursuing narrow interests.

"Although we remain in a turbulent period, I am confident that through greater co-operation in initiatives such as the Belt and Road we will together emerge from this crisis in a stronger position."