China vows to provide developing countries with COVID-19 vaccines first after signing an agreement with WHO-led COVAX in a bid to make the vaccine publicly available, a Foreign Ministry spokesperson said on Friday.
"Joining COVAX marks China's commitment of making the COVID-19 vaccine publicly available," Hua Chunying, the foreign ministry spokesperson, said at a press conference. "China is taking action to promote a fair distribution of COVID-19 vaccines and calls for more countries with the ability to join and support COVAX."
Currently, the COVID-19 pandemic still poses a severe threat to the safety and health of people in all countries. China continues to focus on ensuring that developing countries have equal access to appropriate, safe and effective vaccines.
"To that end, we have solemnly pledged to make vaccines developed and deployed by China a global public good, which will be provided to developing countries as a priority," Hua said.
China has maintained close communication with COVAX with a positive attitude towards joining it, Hua said, noting that even when China is leading the world with several vaccines in advanced stages of R&D and with ample production capacity, it still decided to join COVAX.
"We are taking this concrete step to ensure equitable distribution of vaccines, especially to developing countries, and hope more capable countries will also join and support COVAX. China will also strengthen vaccine cooperation with relevant countries through the COVAX network," said the spokesperson.
China will continue to work together with COVAX partners and contribute its share to the global fight against the pandemic to safeguard all human beings' safety and health, Hua said.
COVAX is part of the Access to COVID-19 Tools (ACT) Accelerator led by the World Health Organization (WHO), the European Commission and France in response to this pandemic. Its aim is to provide equitable access to vaccines for people around the globe once they are avalible.