Africa – China summit on COVID-19 ends with two words – “cooperation” and “solidarity “

The Africa – China virtual summit on COVID-19 has ended with an emphasis on two words – “cooperation” and “solidarity “.

The “spirit of cooperation and solidarity has made it possible for the people of China and Africa to come together to fight the pandemic so that we can exist and prosper peacefully as the human race,”African Union chairperson and President of South Africa, Cyril Ramaphosa said in his closing remarks.

“It requires that we work together in a collective manner through structures such as FOCAC, the African Union and the World Health Organization to overcome this pandemic and advance growth and development in Africa. A lot still needs to be done, as most of our countries have not yet reached the peak of infections,” Mr. Ramaphosa added.

“We are also inspired by China’s commitment that the deployment of the vaccine, when available, should be made a global public good and should be made available to the developing countries.
 
“I would like to applaud China for its pledge of $2 billion to the global COVID-19 response over the next two years,” the AU chair said.

Read Mr. ramaphosa’s closing remarks in full below as sent to TODAY NEWS AFRICA by the South African presidency

As we reach the concluding segment of our deliberations, I would like to thank President Xi and President Sall for convening this vital summit to deepen our cooperation in the fight against the COVID-19 pandemic.
 
This summit is a demonstration of the concept of solidarity which connects us as people and holds us together.
 
That spirit of cooperation and solidarity has made it possible for the people of China and Africa to come together to fight the pandemic so that we can exist and prosper peacefully as the human race.
 
It requires that we work together in a collective manner through structures such as FOCAC, the African Union and the World Health Organization to overcome this pandemic and advance growth and development in Africa.
 
A lot still needs to be done, as most of our countries have not yet reached the peak of infections.
 
We are encouraged by the fact that during the recent 73rd World Health Assembly, President Xi committed China to stepping up information sharing, exchange of experiences and best practices, international cooperation on testing methods, clinical treatment and vaccine and medicine research.
 
We are also inspired by China’s commitment that the deployment of the vaccine, when available, should be made a global public good and should be made available to the developing countries.
 
I would like to applaud China for its pledge of $2 billion to the global COVID-19 response over the next two years.
 
I wish to conclude my remarks by reiterating the importance of solidarity between the people of China and Africa and appealing to all governments and institutions represented in this virtual Summit to continue working together to strengthen our public health systems to confront the health challenges of the future.
 
In the spirit of this human solidarity, we urge for the immediate lifting of all economic sanctions imposed on Zimbabwe and Sudan to allow them to adequately respond to the COVID-19 pandemic and save lives.
 
This will indeed be part of the efforts aimed at rebuilding the lives and economies that have been ravaged and devastated by the pandemic.
 
There is a lot of work that needs to be done to defeat COVID-19 on our continent.
 
I am confident that through the commendable leadership of my brother, President Macky Sall of Senegal and President Xi Jinping of China as Co-Chairs of FOCAC, we can defeat the pandemic and achieve all the goals we have set for our partnership. 

Chief White House Correspondent for

Simon Ateba is Chief White House Correspondent for Today News Africa. Simon covers President Joe Biden, Vice President Kamala Harris, the U.S. government, the United Nations, the International Monetary Fund, the World Bank and other financial and international institutions in Washington D.C. and New York City.

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