Health Care

Coronavirus: China to contribute $2bn to affected countries

Coronavirus: China to contribute $2bn to affected countries”

"The virus does not respect borders, nor is race or nationality relevant", Xi said in a 10-minutes speech via video at the annual meeting of the World Health Organisation's decision-making body.

He also pledged $2 billion in financial support over the next two years to help deal with COVID-19, especially to help developing countries.

Xi also said that if China succeeds in developing a vaccine, it will be declared "a global public good".

People wearing face masks are seen at Wuhan Railway Station, in Wuhan, the Chinese city hit the hardest by the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) outbreak, in the Hubei province, China.

More than 4.64 million people are reported to have been infected globally and 310,236 have died from the flu-like virus that emerged from China late a year ago.

President Xi today stressed China's "open, transparent and responsible attitude" while tackling the pandemic.

Calling the pandemic "the most serious global public health emergency since the end of World War Two", Xi said: "All along we have acted with openness and transparency and responsibility".

China has permitted its fourth potential vaccine to launch clinical trials as scientists around the globe race to find a cure for the coronavirus.

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WHO director Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus was also due to address the virtual assembly, as were a number of heads of state, including Xi Jinping of China, government chiefs and health ministers.

"My hope is that we will be able to join consensus", US Ambassador to the United Nations in Geneva Andrew Bremberg said Friday.

The document does not propose a review to identify missteps in how countries handled the outbreak and is instead forward-looking and calls on the World Health Organization to potentially arrange "scientific and collaborative field missions" to help prevent similar future outbreaks.

China has strenuously denied accusations of a cover up, insisting it has always shared information with the World Health Organization (WHO) and other countries in a timely manner. An EU source hailed the draft as "ambitious", and pointed out that if it passes by consensus as expected, it would mark the first time a global forum has achieved unanimous support for a text on the COVID-19 response.

"The WHO should lead the global response, " he said about the UN agency that is facing a shortfall because the United States has suspended its financial contributions.

Names on a draft resolution seen by Reuters showed support from 116 of the 194 countries in the WHO.

In his letter, Xi encouraged the students to communicate more with their Chinese peers and join hands with youth from all countries to contribute to promoting people-to-people connectivity and building a community with a shared future for humanity.



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