BEIJING, Jan. 20 (Xinhua) -- China calls on the international community to work together to contribute to the equitable distribution and use of COVID-19 vaccines around the world and help defeat the pandemic, a foreign ministry spokesperson said Wednesday.
Spokesperson Hua Chunying made the remarks in response to a question about China's expectations of promoting international cooperation on COVID-19 vaccines.
"We have always maintained that the virus knows no borders and humanity shares a common destiny. Solidarity and cooperation are the most powerful weapon to defeat the COVID-19 pandemic. It is also the common consensus of the international community," Hua said at a press briefing.
China is at the forefront of vaccine research and development globally, with one vaccine for conditional marketing and several others being in clinical trials at different stages, Hua said, adding that this has provided significant support for China's fight against the pandemic and its participation in international cooperation on vaccines.
Currently, China has started the vaccination of key groups, and the domestic demand for vaccines is huge, Hua said, adding that while meeting domestic demand, China has overcome difficulties and made every effort to carry out international cooperation on vaccines with other countries, especially developing countries, in different ways, and provided support and assistance within China's capabilities according to their needs.
Chinese enterprises are conducting joint vaccine research and development with partners in more than 10 countries, including clinical trials and production. As part of the cooperation, Chinese enterprises have provided vaccines to partner countries, Hua said.
Chinese companies have started to export to countries that urgently need vaccines, have approved Chinese vaccines, and have authorized the emergency use of Chinese vaccines in their countries. "Most of them are developing countries," she added.
China has joined the WHO-led COVAX initiative to support the G20 in promoting international cooperation on vaccines and multilateral cooperation to promote the equitable global distribution of vaccines, the spokesperson said.
According to incomplete statistics, more than 40 countries have requested to import vaccines from China so far. "We believe that with the continuous expansion of production capacity, China will gradually increase the supply of vaccines to countries in need," she said.
China's move to promote international cooperation on vaccines has been recognized and welcomed by the international community, Hua said. She added that many countries believe that China has made real efforts to live up to its promise that vaccines are public goods.
At present, Chinese companies are actively discussing cooperation with COVAX, Hua said. "China is willing to contribute to the realization of vaccine accessibility and affordability in developing countries through COVAX."
At present, the virus is still ravaging the world, and the prevention and control of the pandemic remains a long and arduous task, Hua said. She continued to say that the international community needs to work together to meet the vaccine needs of all countries, especially developing countries.
"We expect all parties to take concrete actions to provide more vaccines to developing countries, promote the fair distribution and use of vaccines around the world, and help defeat the pandemic at an early date," she added. Enditem