China, Pakistan can always rely on each other in difficult times: Chinese Foreign Ministry’s Spokesperson

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BEIJING, Feb 11 (APP):China Tuesday highly appreciated the resolution passed by the Senate of Pakistan and said that it showed once again that both China and Pakistan, as a community of a shared future, could always rely on each other in difficult and odd times.

“We note with high appreciation the resolution passed by the Pakistani side. China and Pakistan are iron-clad friends and all-weather strategic cooperative partners with a tradition of mutual assistance,” Chinese Foreign Ministry’s Spokesperson Geng Shuang said while commenting on the resolution during his regular online briefing held here.

In its resolution passed on February 10, the Senate of Pakistan expressed full solidarity and support to China in combating novel coronavirus pneumonia outbreak.

The spokesperson said: “This resolution stands as further testament to the unwavering friendship between our two countries and peoples. It shows once again that we, as a community of a shared future, can always rely on each other in difficult times.”

The resolution appreciated the Chinese government’s measures to combat the virus
and protect Pakistani students in China. It also said that Pakistan would work together
with China to battle the epidemic.

Geng Shuang said that China stood ready to strengthen cooperation with Pakistan and other members of the international community to combat the epidemic and contribute to global public health.

“With a highly responsible attitude, we will also enhance communication and coordination with Pakistan and do our best to ensure the health and safety of
Pakistani nationals in China,” he added.

About protection and safety of Pakistanis, Nepalese, Cambodians and other international students remaining in Wuhan, he said that the Chinese side attached
great importance to the protection of the lives and physical health of citizens of
all countries in Wuhan, Hubei Province, and took active and effective measures
to address their legitimate concerns and demands in a timely manner.

He remarked that the Director-General of the World Health Organization (WHO),
Tedros also stressed many times that flying out in a rush, was not recommended,
the best way being stay put and enhancing self-protection.

For those countries that wished to take home their nationals, China would make relevant arrangements and offer necessary assistance, consistent with international practice and China’s domestic epidemic control measures.

The WHO also stressed many times that it did not recommend imposing travel
and trade restrictions on China. As some countries had taken such excessive steps
as suspending flights, ICAO has also issued bulletins and encouraged all countries
to follow WHO recommendations. “We hope the professional recommendations of
WHO and ICAO would be respected”, he added.

To a question regarding impact of novel coronavirus outbreak on the economy of
China and other countries, he said it all depended on the effects of the epidemic
prevention and control measures.

“We believe our economic fundamentals that support China’s long-term growth,
will remain unchanged, and we are capable of minimizing the epidemic’s impact
on our economy,” he added.

Geng Shuang said that in fact, international institutions including the IMF and the
World Bank noted that China had enough policy space to deal with the epidemic and China’s efforts have effectively reduced the risks the world economy might be
exposed to.

“Today China’s GDP accounts for around 16 percent of the global total and
contributes over 30 percent to world economic growth. If our economy is impacted,
there will inevitably be spillover effects on other countries and even the world
economy. Therefore, by fighting against NCP, China is safeguarding both its
own country and the world,” he added.

According to the latest data released by China’s National Health Commission
here on Tuesday, the confirmed novel coronavirus cases on the Chinese mainland
have so far reached over 42,000 while a total of 1,017 people have died of the
deadly disease.

The prevailing pneumonia outbreak was first reported in the city of Wuhan,
central China’s Hubei Province in December. Experts have attributed the
outbreak to a novel coronavirus that has since spread across China and
abroad.