President Cyril Ramaphosa. All leaders agree that the Covid-19 outbreak poses a grave and real threat to the lives, livelihoods and prosperity of our people. Photographer: Armand Hough/African News Agency(ANA)
President Cyril Ramaphosa. All leaders agree that the Covid-19 outbreak poses a grave and real threat to the lives, livelihoods and prosperity of our people. Photographer: Armand Hough/African News Agency(ANA)

Ramaphosa expresses gratitude for China's unwavering assistance to South Africa

By Chelsea Lotz Time of article published May 18, 2020

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President Xi Jinping has offered South Africa unwavering support amid the Covid-19 pandemic, that has proven to be one of the greatest international economic challenges of our time.

In a telephone conversation with the South African President, Ramaphosa expressed gratitude for China's continuous support, stating that the two countries remain as "comrades and brothers", saying that China is a "true friend and reliable partner" of South Africa and African countries.

In the constructive discourse between Ramaphosa and Xi Jinping, Xi stated that it is willing to work with South Africa to implement the outcomes of the G20 Leaders' Summit on Covid-19, as well as continuing to jointly promote international political and diplomatic cooperation on the epidemic prevention, as well as control and safeguard African and global public health security.

Earlier this year, China exported a large donation of Covid-19 medical supplies and equipment. International Relations Minister Naledi Pandor and Health Minister Zweli Mkhize stated that the country received in total; 95 respirators, 50000 surgical masks, 3000 goggles, face shields, diagnostic kits, 11000 protective face masks and clothing.

Due to the immediate and decisive action by Ramaphosa to declare a state of emergency, the South African government adopted a series of urgent epidemic response measures and achieved positive results, Xi stated.

China has provided assistance to many countries in Africa that have established diplomatic relations with China, to strengthen joint prevention and control cooperation through the Africa Centres for Disease Control and Prevention. "The international community should uphold the concept of building a community with a shared future for mankind, strengthen solidarity, coordination and cooperation, resolutely curb the spread of the pandemic and protect people's life and health," Xi stated.

In addition, China will continue to provide firm support and as much assistance as its capacity allows for South Africa, and strengthen bilateral medical and health cooperation, Xi stated.

Ramaphosa noted China's historical support for South Africa throughout the past few decades, and amid the global pandemic.

"This is very important for South Africa and African countries and increases our confidence in fighting the epidemic." South Africa and China have enjoyed strong relations, as economic brothers, lending mutual support in times of difficulty.  

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