Chinese, German Foreign Ministers hold phone talks

BEIJING: Chinese State Councilor and Foreign Minister Wang Yi on Friday held a telephone conversation with his German counterpart, Heiko Maas, and called for closer global cooperation to defeat the COVID-19 pandemic.
“China sympathizes with Germany’s current difficulties, firmly stands with the German people, and supports Germany in its fight against the epidemic until we jointly and completely overcome it,” he said.
The German government and people had extended their support to China at a crucial time when China was fighting the COVID-19 epidemic, Wang said. Wang said although China must concentrate on preventing the epidemic from rebounding, it would nonetheless provide help to Germany to the best of its ability. He expressed his belief that the German people can unite together to fight the epidemic, and that Germany is capable of coping with the challenges facing the country. He added China is willing to further coordinate with Germany in the fight against COVID-19 and jointly provide help to other countries in need. China and Germany, two major economies and manufacturing powers, should prevent the epidemic from triggering a new round of trade protectionism, jointly safeguard an open multilateral trading system and ensure the stability and security of the global industrial chain and supply chain, Wang said. China, he added, is also willing to help German enterprises in China solve the difficulties encountered in resuming work and production.
Noting there are many Chinese expatriates and students in Germany, who serve as the cordial link between the two countries, Wang expressed his hope and belief that Germany would effectively protect their health and safety. Wang pointed out the voices in some countries groundlessly blaming China for delaying reporting the outbreak, something he called completely inconsistent with the facts.
China wasted no time in reporting the outbreak to the World Health Organization, sharing the genetic sequence of the novel coronavirus with other countries, carrying out international cooperation to prevent the spread of and control the disease, and extending help to other countries with their own COVID-19 outbreaks, Wang said, adding these most fundamental facts have garnered praise from the international community. – Agencies