The Chinese embassy in Doha highlighted the close collaboration between Qatar and China in fighting the Covid-19 pandemic while marking the 71st Anniversary of the Founding of the People’s Republic of China Tuesday.
Speaking at the event, Chinese ambassador Zhou Jian said: “China and Qatar are strategic partners. We are together, both in joys and sorrows. What choices have we made together in the face of Covid-19? The answer lies in four “C’s”: the first C is “confidence””.
“At the height of China’s fight against Covid-19, His Highness the Amir called President Xi Jinping, stressing Qatar’s full confidence in China’s capability to beat the virus and Qatar’s readiness to help China,” the envoy said.
“At a critical moment in Qatar’s fight against the virus, Chinese State Councilor and Foreign Minister Wang Yi spoke with HE the Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs Sheikh Mohamed bin Abdulrahman al-Thani on the phone. Minister Wang Yi expressed his confidence in Qatar achieving an ultimate victory against the outbreak, and reaffirmed that China would do its best to help Qatar”, he said. “In short, China and Qatar trusted and supported each other, giving each other greater confidence and determination to defeat the epidemic.”
The second “C”, the envoy noted, means “consolidation”: the Qatari government, along with some Qatari corporations, donated 300 tonnes of medical supplies, including surgical masks and disinfectant to China.
He said Qatar Airways transported PPEs to China through its global network for free. “We have provided convenience for Qatar within four days to urgently purchase four million surgical masks and 640,000 bottles of disinfectant from China, and worked together with Qatar Airways to deliver supplies around the world through its “green channel”.”
The envoy noted that Dr Zhong Nanshan, the doctor leading China’s fight against Covid-19, shared his experience with Qatari counterparts. Chinese companies in Qatar, Zhou said, donated one million pairs of surgical gloves and 7,000 sets of protective gowns, making contributions to Qatar’s triumph over the epidemic.
The third “C”, he said, means “collaboration” where the two countries actively participated in international co-operation, supporting the World Health Organisation in playing a lead role in the global fight.
“Together we oppose politicising the pandemic or attaching a geographic label to the virus. Together we provide support to the Global Alliance for Vaccines and Immunisation (Gavi). Together we saw that the 9th ministerial meeting of the China-Arab States Co-operation Forum reached a joint statement of solidarity,” the envoy said.
“Qatar provided more than 20 nations with medical supplies, donated $140mn to multilateral medical institutions, and helped overseas nationals return home safely. We sincerely applaud the Qatari government for its concern for the wellbeing of its people,” he stressed.
The fourth “C”, he pointed out, means “co-operation”, citing the co-operation between Qatar and China under the Belt and Road framework, which made progress despite the Covid-19 pandemic.
Zhou said the two countries signed a contract for building LNG ships, which will further expand Qatar’s LNG fleet. China Railway Construction Corporation Ltd. worked on the construction of Lusail Stadium without stop in order to have it ready before the 2022 FIFA World Cup.
“The green, intelligent and water-saving technology developed by China’s Ningxia Hui Autonomous Region has been adopted in Qatar, contributing to Qatar’s sustainable development,” he added.
“The pandemic has given prominence to the “contactless economy”, expanding space for China-Qatar co-operation in the new industries and business formats. We firmly believe that our collective fight against the pandemic will deepen the friendship between China and Qatar, and our bilateral co-operation will embrace brighter prospects,” Zhou added.