China ‘an unparalleled friend of humanity’ amid pandemic

By Md Enamul Hassan (People's Daily Online) 15:09, May 28, 2021

Just as hard times always reveal who your true friends are, so too has the Coronavirus pandemic helped humanity identify its genuine friends. The pandemic has revealed the true colors of some major countries that have long been pretending to be passionate friends of humanity and the only protectors of human rights all over the world.

A student of Dhaka Medical College and Hospital receives a dose of China-donated COVID-19 vaccine in Dhaka, Bangladesh, May 25, 2021. (Xinhua)

During the dark days of the pandemic, the fake and pretentious faces of the so-called protectors have been unmasked. The world has realized that these countries are of no help in the global fight against the fatal virus. People have been frustrated seeing the countries acting in quite the opposite way to everything they believe in.

Based on their long-nurtured beliefs, people expected the major countries to come forward to help the world get rid of the pandemic. But these countries have set the worst precedent of selfishness and protectionism by hoarding life-saving medical equipment and vaccines.

The countries, especially the US, have stockpiled far more doses than they need. Statistics from some agencies and media say that the major countries, which account for 14 percent of the world's population, now hold six times more vaccines than medium- and low-income countries, which account for over 86 percent of the global population.

Though the US has a population of 330 million, only 4 percent of the global population, it alone has purchased about 2.6 billion doses, a quarter of the global total, far more than it needs. Up to 100 million doses are sitting in US warehouses gathering dust. Furthermore, the major countries have imposed restrictions on the supply of raw materials for life-saving medicines, equipment, and vaccines to developing countries.

China, on the other hand, was the first to pledge to make its vaccines a global public good and has been honoring this commitment. China is working hard to contribute to realizing the accessibility and affordability of vaccines in developing countries. The country has so far provided vaccine assistance to over 80 developing countries and exported doses to more than 50 countries.

China has already supplied medical equipment to more than 150 countries and 13 international organizations to fight the virus. It is also working with developing countries through technology transfer and joint production. The country is also calling on other capable nations to provide vaccines to developing countries and the world to defeat the virus as soon as possible.

Speaking at the recently-held Global Health Summit, President Xi Jinping said that China will provide an additional $3 billion in international aid over the next three years to support the COVID-19 response and economic and social recovery in other developing countries.

The Chinese president said that his country has already supplied 300 million doses of vaccines to the world, and will provide still more vaccines to the best of its ability. China supports its vaccine companies in transferring technologies to other developing countries and carrying out joint production with them.

President Xi mentioned that China has announced its support for waiving intellectual property rights on COVID-19 vaccines. It also supports the World Trade Organization and other international institutions in making an early decision on this matter.

He further mentioned that China proposes setting up an international forum on vaccine cooperation for vaccine-developing and producing countries, companies, and other stakeholders to explore ways of promoting fair and equitable distribution of vaccines around the world.

His speech at the Global Health Summit was widely admired and welcomed as a plan for international cooperation in the fight against the pandemic. People firmly believe that China will walk the talk of its president. The country has already proven its sincerity by transforming its president’s promises into actions.

Like many other countries in the world, Bangladesh is also a beneficiary of Chinese assistance and cooperation in the fight against the novel coronavirus. As a friendly nation, Bangladesh has already received 500,000 doses of Chinese vaccines. China is expected to continue donating more vaccines to Bangladesh in the future.

As a strategic partner and time-tested friend of China, Bangladesh is now trying to get Chinese vaccines on a priority basis. China is being flooded with demands for vaccines from many countries, but Bangladesh is in talks with China to get the vaccines as soon as possible.

People from around the world, especially from developing nations, will never forget the pathetic memory of the hardship that China went through at the beginning of the pandemic. But China has managed to defeat the deadly virus at home and come out as the savior of the already devastated world from the curse of COVID-19.

China has extended its helping hand to rescue other countries at a time when other major countries have turned their backs on mankind. Thus China has received much love and earned the name of ‘an unparalleled friend of humanity’ from across the globe during the pandemic.

This article is edited and republished from Chinatimes24.com

Md Enamul Hassan is a news editor and broadcast journalist at China Media Group (CMG) in Beijing, China.    

(Web editor: Hongyu, Liang Jun)