BEIJING– Chinese President Xi Jinping said Tuesday that China stands ready to strengthen exchanges and cooperation with Germany on COVID-19 vaccines and push for the vaccines to be fairly distributed as a global public good, especially for the benefit of developing countries.
Xi made the remarks in a phone conversation with German Chancellor Angela Merkel.
Recalling that he and Merkel both attended the Group of 20 summit days ago, Xi noted that both sides advocate upholding multilateralism, boosting international cooperation, joining forces against the coronavirus disease, reinvigorating the world economy, and jointly tackling global challenges.
Currently, with Europe and some other regions in the world facing the test of a second wave of the pandemic, it remains a top priority for all parties to work together to fight the epidemic, Xi stressed.
Since the onset of the pandemic, he noted, China and Germany have kept communication in a flexible way, with practical cooperation continuing to advance.
China is actively fostering a new development pattern and steadfastly expanding domestic demand and opening-up, which will bring new opportunities to Germany, Xi pointed out, adding that China also hopes that Germany and the European Union (EU) will be open to Chinese enterprises.
He suggested that the two sides maintain mutual respect and always stick to the overall direction of dialogue and cooperation as well as the general principle of mutual benefit.
He also conveyed his hope that the new round of China-Germany intergovernmental consultations will make plans for the two countries’ cooperation in various fields.
Pointing out that China-EU cooperation is gaining more global and strategic significance in the complicated international situation, Xi said the two sides need to enhance mutual trust and cooperation, strengthen exchanges and mutual learning, safeguard multilateralism and improve global governance.
He recalled that a number of consensuses were reached during his video conference with Merkel, European Council President Charles Michel and European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen in September, adding that they are all being implemented.
China, he added, is ready to maintain continuous close communication with the EU on their major agendas for the next phase and strive to conclude China-EU investment treaty negotiations as scheduled.
He also called for joint efforts to promote the establishment of China-EU dialogue mechanisms on environment and climate as well as digital cooperation, make China and the EU green partners and digital partners, and inject robust impetus into the development of the China-EU comprehensive strategic partnership under the new circumstances.
For her part, Merkel noted that the world is undergoing profound changes and that Europe is facing the impact of a second wave of the pandemic.
The fact that China has done a good job in COVID-19 prevention and control and taken the lead in economic recovery is good news for German enterprises, she said, expressing the hope that the two sides will increase communication on vaccine cooperation and push forward cooperation in such fields as trade, investment and new-energy vehicles.
The German side, she added, congratulates China on having signed the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership trade deal with relevant parties, and hopes to step up efforts with China to push for concluding negotiations on the EU-China investment treaty by the end of this year.
Germany highly appreciates China’s announcement of its medium- and long-term targets and visions for climate change response, and hopes to deepen bilateral cooperation in such areas as climate change and ecological environment, added the Chancellor.
Germany stands ready to continue to maintain close communication with China over major Germany-China and EU-China political agendas for the next phase, she said, adding that she will stay committed to pushing for sustained and sound development of Germany-China and EU-China relations.