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China calls on Switzerland to increase medical supply production

By ZHOU JIN | chinadaily.com.cn | Updated: 2020-04-08 20:34

China calls for Switzerland to increase production of medical supplies and work with China to guarantee the materials needed in combating the COVID-19 and ensure the stability of global industrial and supply chains, a senior official said on Tuesday.

State Councilor and Foreign Minister Wang Yi made the remarks in a telephone conversation with Swiss Foreign Minister Ignazio Cassis.

China is speeding up production of ventilators, which are the most urgently-needed equipment, Wang said. He said China hopes Switzerland, one of the world's major suppliers of ventilators parts, will increase production to meet the pressing demands of the world.

China also would like to cooperate with Switzerland in researching and developing drugs and vaccines, Wang added.

The State Councilor noted China has established a green channel to facilitate the transportation of supplies for pandemic prevention.

China appreciated Switzerland for supporting the country in the fight against the novel coronavirus, he said, adding that the Swiss embassy and consulates in China lowered flags to half-mast as China mourned those sacrificed and succumbed to the COVID-19 on Tomb Sweeping Day, which showed the friendship of Swiss people to the Chinese people.

He said China hopes Switzerland will protect the health and safety of Chinese nationals, including its students there.

Wang said the international community should set aside bias and suspicions, strengthen solidarity and collaboration in dealing with the challenge the virus brought to the health and safety of mankind.

He said he believes the international community, including Switzerland, will impartially evaluate China's efforts in curbing the disease, and oppose any remark or behavior making use of the pandemic for political purposes.

Noting this year marks the 70th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between China and Switzerland, Wang said China believes the joint fight against the virus will consolidate and deepen the friendship between the two countries.

Switzerland expressed gratitude to China for its support and assistance in combating COVID-19 in Switzerland, Cassis said, adding Switzerland is willing to strengthen cooperation with China to reduce the impact of the pandemic on bilateral trade cooperation.

Switzerland does not agree with remarks or participate in activities that politicize the pandemic, the foreign minister said, adding the international community needs cooperation instead of blaming each other under the current situation.

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