Special: Battle Against Novel Coronavirus
Chinese State Councilor and Foreign Minister Wang Yi met German Chancellor Angela Merkel on Thursday in Berlin, as he is on his first overseas trip since a novel coronavirus outbreak has hit China, infecting over 63,000 people across the country.
Wang spoke about the positive changes following China’s enormous efforts to contain the epidemic and thanked Germany for its assistance and donations for virus relief.
Wang said China has implemented all-out efforts to contain the epidemic, and that the prevention and control measures have achieved good results – the number of infections is now trending downwards, which means that the outbreak is under control, and the number of cured is increasing, which means that the virus is curable.
Wang told Merkel that China has taken responsibility for global public health security by trying to control the spread of the epidemic worldwide.
We do our best to protect the health of Chinese people and also we have taken measures to try to stop the outbreak in other countries, he said.
The minister also expressed gratitude for Germany’s assistance with coronavirus relief, saying that political trust and bilateral cooperation will be further enhanced.
China is fully capable and confident it will overcome the epidemic and the short-term economic difficulties, Wang said.
He added that the country will strive to meet this year’s economic and social development targets and build a moderately prosperous society in all respects.
China appreciated the calm and rational attitude of the German side and is committed to maintaining normal bilateral exchanges despite the epidemic, Wang said.
The political trust and cooperation between both sides will be further enhanced, he said.
Merkel spoke highly of China’s efforts to contain the outbreak and said Germany was ready to offer more assistance in light of China’s needs.
She said China has taken decisive and effective prevention measures and implemented huge efforts to stop the outbreak, which is fully recognized, and that Germany was confident that China can eventually contain the epidemic.
This year, there are a series of important agendas between China and Germany as well as China and Europe, and Merkel hoped that the two sides would maintain close contact on these issues.
Speaking of the 5G issue, Merkel said that Germany will not exclude specific companies, and was willing to see both sides opening markets to each other.
She also said the two countries should work together to accelerate the negotiation of an investment agreement between the EU and China.
Germany recognizes China’s role in major international and regional issues and is willing to strengthen communication and coordination with China, she added.
Wang was in Berlin for the 5th round of China-Germany strategic dialogue on diplomacy and security. He will also deliver a keynote address at the annual Munich Security Conference, which is being held from Thursday to Saturday.