SCIO briefing on international cooperation in response to COVID-19

The State Council Information Office held a press conference on March 5 in Beijing to brief the media about international cooperation in response to COVID-19. March 6, 2020

Hu Kaihong:

Thank you, Mr. Guo. Next, Mr. Zeng will give his introduction.

Zeng Yixin:

Good morning, media friends. Since the COVID-19 outbreak, following the decisions, deployments and guidance of President Xi Jinping, the National Health Commission (NHC) has attached great importance to the prevention and control of the epidemic. We have conducted international and regional cooperation in the fight, reported relevant information in a timely manner, shared our experience in terms of epidemic prevention and control, as well as diagnosis and treatment practices, and also conducted technical exchanges, which have received positive feedback from the international community. Our priorities are represented by the following two aspects:

First, we have conducted multilateral communication and collaboration, thus being able to achieve global solidarity and consensus. We organized and hosted WHO Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus's visit to China, and President Xi Jinping met and held talks with him. We also talked with the WHO chief on cooperation in epidemic prevention and control. We organized a WHO-China expert team to conduct field inspections in Beijing, Guangdong, Sichuan and Wuhan, to obtain a clearer picture of China's epidemic situation, prevention and control measures, medical treatment, as well as progress of scientific and technological research into the virus. The joint expert team has provided a lot of constructive suggestions to the work of epidemic prevention and control in China and around the world. Officials of the NHC have communicated by various means with the WHO and other international and regional organizations, as well as the health authorities of other countries. The NHC also hosted the visit of Egypt's Health Minister Hala Zayed. They have offered sympathy and support to the Chinese government and Chinese people in fighting the outbreak. At a press conference of the WHO-China joint expert team, the WHO experts spoke highly of the contribution China has made to upholding global public health security. 

Second, we have shared epidemic information and strengthened our global technical collaboration. The NHC has shared epidemic information with the WHO and other international and regional organizations in a timely manner. After we identified the pathogenic nature of the virus, we shared its full genome sequence, primers and probes with the international community at the earliest possible date. We also shared many technical documents, including our epidemic prevention and control measures, as well as diagnosis and treatment plans, with more than 100 countries around the world and over 10 international and regional organizations. We held more than 20 expert seminars and remote meetings with the WHO, ASEAN, EU, APEC, African Union, CARICOM, SCO and other international and regional organizations, as well as with Japan, South Korea, Russia, Germany, France, the United States and Laos, sharing China's experience and practices in preventing and controlling the epidemic, such as laboratory testing, epidemiology investigation, as well as clinical diagnosis and treatment.

Diseases do not respect borders, and we should work together to jointly protect people's health around the world. Looking ahead, we will earnestly implement the decisions and deployments made by the CPC Central Committee and the State Council. In line with the International Health Regulations (IHR) and the health cooperation protocols with relevant countries, we will continue to conduct efficient cooperation with the WHO, and share with the international community our experience and information in epidemic prevention and control, as well as coordinate the measures being undertaken, so as to prevent the coronavirus being imported into China on the one hand, and do what we can to support other countries and regions with the epidemic outbreaks on the other. We will play our role as a responsible major country, and promote the building of a community with a shared future for mankind, so that we can jointly safeguard regional and international public health security. Thank you.  

Hu Kaihong:

Thank you, Mr. Zeng. Now, the floor is open for questions. Please identify your media outlet before asking your question.

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