Xi urges BRICS to jointly fight Covid-19, vows to help world economies | Pakistan Today

Xi urges BRICS to jointly fight Covid-19, vows to help world economies

BEIJING: Chinese President Xi Jinping has stressed the need to uphold multilateralism, and safeguard peace and stability in the world to help wage joint fight against Covid-19 pandemic.
Addressing the participants at the 12th BRICS Summit via video-link, Xi said that multilateralism, equity and justice can keep war and conflict at bay, while unilateralism and power politics will inflate dispute and confrontation.
“Flouting rules and laws, treading the path of unilateralism and bullying, and withdrawing from international organisations and agreements run counter to the will of the general public and trample on the legitimate rights and dignity of all nations,” said the Chinese leader.
He said that the world is caught between a pandemic of the century and momentous changes never seen in the last one hundred years.
“Around the world, Covid-19 is posing a grave threat to people’s life and well-being. The global public health system is facing a severe test. International trade and investment have shrunk considerably. The flow of goods and personnel has been impeded. Factors for uncertainty and instability are numerous. The world economy is witnessing the worst recession since the Great Depression in the 1930s. Unilateralism, protectionism and acts of bullying are becoming rampant, and the deficit in governance, trust, development and peace is widening instead of narrowing,” he said.
Xi said that China remains convinced that the theme of our times, peace and development, has not changed, and that the trend toward multipolarity and economic globalization cannot be turned around.
“We must keep people’s welfare close to heart and pursue the vision of a community with a shared future for mankind. Through concrete actions, we will contribute our share to making the world a better place for everyone,” he said.
“We must hold high the banner of multilateralism, and defend the purposes and principles of the Charter of the United Nations. We must endeavour to safeguard the UN-centered international system and the international order underpinned by international law. It is important that countries rise above ideology and respect each other’s choices of social system, economic model and development path consistent with their national conditions,” he observed.
The Chinese president urged the need to champion the concept of common, comprehensive, cooperative and sustainable security.
“We need to work through consultation and negotiation to address differences. We need to oppose interference in others’ internal affairs, as well as unilateral sanctions and long-arm jurisdiction. With concerted efforts, we will foster a peaceful and stable environment for development,” he said.
Xi urged BRICS nations to jointly fight the Covid-19 challenge as Coronavirus is still causing havoc in many places and waves of infection are resurging.
“Securing a worldwide victory against the pandemic remains an uphill journey. Nearly one year into the battle, many countries have gained important experience on Covid-19 containment and made encouraging progress in drugs and vaccine research and development (R&D). Our fight over the past year proves that as long as we stand in unity and follow science, we can control the spread of the virus and offset its impact,” remarked the Chinese leader.
Calling for keeping people’s life and health first, Xi urged to mobilise all resources and do everything we can to protect people’s safety and well-being.
“It is important to step up international coordination and response and share information and epidemic control experience to stop the virus in its tracks. It is important that we support WHO’s crucial leadership role in this endeavor,” he said.
He also said that Chinese companies are working with their Russian and Brazilian partners on phase-III clinical trials of vaccines, and China is prepared to have cooperation with South Africa and India as well.
“China has joined the COVAX facility, a platform on which we will share vaccines with other countries, developing countries in particular. We will actively consider providing vaccines to BRICS countries where there is a need. To support the development of the BRICS Vaccine R&D Center, China has designated its own national center. We will work with other BRICS countries both online and offline to advance collective vaccine research and trials, set up plants, authorize production and recognize each other’s standards,” he said.
He proposed to convene a BRICS symposium on traditional medicine to explore its role in coronavirus prevention and treatment which may boost the global arsenal against Covid-19.
Xi said that the acts of politicisation, stigmatisation, blame-shifting and scapegoating only served to disrupt overall global cooperation against the virus.
“We need to overcome division with unity, replace bias with reason and stamp out the ‘political virus’. In this way, we will pool the maximum global synergy to beat the virus,” he said.
Xi called for pursuing openness and innovation and promoting global economic recovery.
“To stabilise the economy while controlling the pandemic is the pressing task facing all countries. Under the precondition that safety is ensured, we must actively pursue economic recovery and seek to carry out economic and social activities in an orderly way as we fight the virus on an ongoing basis. We need to strengthen macroeconomic policy coordination, follow through on the initiative on facilitating cross-border flow of people and goods, and keep industrial and supply chains safe and open to better enable the resumption of business activities and economic recovery,” he said.
He proposed that China would work with other parties to flesh out the BRICS Partnership on New Industrial Revolution at a faster pace.
“We will open in Xiamen, Fujian Province a BRICS Partnership on New Industrial Revolution innovation center to advance cooperation on policy coordination, personnel training and project development, and we welcome the active participation of fellow BRICS countries,” he concluded.

Mian Abrar

The writer heads Pakistan Today's Islamabad Bureau. He has a special focus on counter-terrorism and inter-state relations in Asia, Asia Pacific and South East Asia regions. He can be reached at [email protected]