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Foreign Minister Makhdoom Shah Mahmood Qureshi participated in six-country Foreign Ministers’ Video Conference on Joint Response to COVID-19. The Conference was hosted by the State Councilor and Foreign Minister of China. Foreign Ministers of Bangladesh, Nepal and Sri Lanka and Acting Foreign Minister of Afghanistan also attended the Conference.

Welcoming the initiative, the Foreign Minister said that it was important for all participating countries to enhance cooperation and collaboration in areas like COVID-19 pandemic, poverty alleviation and disaster relief. He stressed that the pandemic was a common challenge and required joint efforts.

The Foreign Minister appreciated the key deliverables of the Conference including China-South Asia Emergency Supplies Reserve, China-South Asia Poverty Alleviation Cooperative Development Center and China-South Asia E-Commerce Cooperation Forum on Poverty Alleviation in Rural Areas. He underlined that these initiatives will equip participating countries to better respond to health emergencies and natural disasters, and will be helpful in eradicating poverty. He underlined that economic and human security stands at the centre of regional development paradigm. China-Pakistan Economic corridor (CPEC), and Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) would emerge as the regional hub of trade, connectivity and economic activity, he added.

The Foreign Minister stressed the need to ensure equitable and affordable supply of vaccine as ‘global public good.’ He maintained that notions of stigmatization and insinuations on the origin of the virus must be discouraged. The Foreign Minister underscored that all countries should uphold multilateralism and extend full support to WHO’s science-based work and reject its politicization.

Foreign Minister Qureshi briefed the participants about various measures taken by Pakistan to combat the virus aimed at preserving lives and securing livelihoods.

 

Islamabad
27 April 2021

173/2021
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