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State Councilor and Foreign Minister Wang Yi: China and Switzerland Should Work Together to Keep Industrial and Supply Chains Stable

2020-04-08

On 7 April, State Councilor and Foreign Minister Wang Yi took a phone call from Swiss Federal Councilor and Foreign Minister Ignazio Cassis.

Wang pointed out that with arduous efforts of the Chinese people, the outbreak in China has been brought under control, but there is still the risk of resurgence particularly as a result of imported cases. This fully shows that disease recognizes no borders or races and all countries must come together to tide over this challenge as a community with a shared future.

Wang noted the valuable support rendered by the Swiss government and people to China in outbreak response. During the Qingming (Tomb Sweeping Day) holiday, the Swiss embassy in Beijing joined the national mourning for the martyrs who died fighting COVID-19 and deceased compatriots by flying its flag at half-mast. China appreciates this show of friendship by the Swiss people to the Chinese people.

Wang said that China is doing its best to support other countries in fighting the outbreak. Fast tracks have been opened for efficient transportation of containment supplies. Recognizing the worldwide shortage of ventilators needed to battle the outbreak, China is racing against the time to ramp up production. It is hoped that Switzerland, a supplier of important components, could significantly step up supplies to help manufacturers raise output and meet the urgent need of countries. This will ensure material supplies for global outbreak response and also help keep global industrial and supply chains stable. China also stands ready to collaborate closely with Switzerland on the development of medicines and vaccines. China hopes and trusts that the Swiss side will ensure the health and safety of Chinese nationals and students in the country.

Wang stressed that as the outbreak poses a grave challenge to global health security, the international community must rise above bias and suspicion and strengthen solidarity and coordination. He trusted that the rest of the world, Switzerland included, would look at China's efforts in a fair light and reject any rhetoric or attempt to exploit the outbreak for political purposes. Noting that this year marks the 70th anniversary of China-Switzerland diplomatic ties, he expressed confidence that friendship between the two countries will be further strengthened and deepened through the joint fight against COVID-19.

Cassis commended China for its important progress in outbreak control and appreciated China's support and assistance to Switzerland's containment efforts. Switzerland stands ready to step up cooperation with China on ventilator production and development of medicines and vaccines, ensure stability in industrial and supply chains and mitigate the impact on bilateral economic and trade ties. He said that Switzerland does not approve of, nor will it seek to politicize the outbreak, and agreed the international community needs solidarity and cooperation rather than blame games. Switzerland would take care of Chinese citizens and students in the country and protect their health and safety. He looked forward to jointly celebrating the 70th anniversary of diplomatic relations after defeating the virus together.

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