BEIJING (Xinhua) — China and Japan need to boost coordination to prevent cross-border spread of the COVID-19 epidemic and effectively safeguard public health in both countries and the region at large, said Chinese State Councilor and Foreign Minister Wang Yi on Wednesday night.
In a phone call with Japanese Foreign Minister Toshimitsu Motegi, Wang also urged the two countries to actively explore ways to strengthen international cooperation on public health within multilateral frameworks.
Briefing Motegi on the latest progress in China’s epidemic prevention and control efforts, Wang noted that the situation is steadily improving though it remains complex and grave, and China will continue to make all-out efforts to win the battle against the epidemic.
The fundamentals of China’s long-term economic growth remain unchanged, and the epidemic only has a short-term and limited impact, Wang said.
China, he added, will endeavor to minimize the impact of the epidemic and achieve its economic and social development goals this year.
China appreciates Japan’s firm stand with China from the very beginning and thanks the Japanese government and all sectors of the Japanese society for their valuable support and help, Wang said, adding that in the face of the epidemic, China and Japan constitute a community with a shared future that should stick together through thick and thin.
China is equally concerned about the epidemic in Japan and has provided necessary medical materials based on Japan’s needs, Wang said, pledging further assistance within China’s capability if necessary.
The two sides should further strengthen exchanges between counterpart departments and between experts, and work closely in epidemic prevention and control, medical treatment, drug and vaccine research and development, Wang said.
He also suggested that China and Japan jointly ensure the stability of their industrial chains and supply chains and reduce the epidemic’s impact upon bilateral cooperation as much as possible.
Noting that both China and Japan are major economies in the world, Wang said he believes that maintaining normal economic and trade cooperation between China and Japan constitutes an important contribution to the world’s economic stability and development.
Motegi, for his part, extended sincere sympathies to the Chinese side over the difficulties and losses inflicted by the new virus and voiced hope that the epidemic will be curbed soon with joint efforts of all Chinese people.
As a friendly neighbor of China, Japan is willing to continue cooperation with China to the greatest extent, he said.
Expressing gratitude to China for donating medical supplies to Japan, Motegi shared the view that the two countries, as important economies in the world, should work together to safeguard normal economic and trade cooperation and ensure the stability of global industrial and supply chains.
Motegi briefed Wang on the novel coronavirus epidemic in Japan, saying that confirmed cases have emerged sporadically in Japan and in some areas, the epidemic has been spreading on a small scale.
It has not yet become a widespread epidemic, he said, adding that the following two weeks are crucial for Japan to contain the outbreak.
The Japanese government has formulated response policies and will take measures to contain its spread, Motegi said, expressing his hope that the Chinese and Japanese sides would continue to share information and enhance communication and cooperation.
Wang said that the two countries, as neighbours, should help each other.
He voiced confidence that Japan has the capability and conditions to effectively contain the spread of the epidemic and hoped the Tokyo Olympics will be successfully held as scheduled.