BEIJING, June 24 (Xinhua) -- Chinese President Xi Jinping said Thursday that China is ready to continue providing vaccines and other support for Fiji's fight against the COVID-19 pandemic.
In a phone conversation with Fijian Prime Minister Voreqe Bainimarama, Xi said China will set up a China-Pacific Island Countries reserve of emergency supplies, and help Fiji and other island countries improve their ability to cope with major public health incidents and natural disasters.
Pointing out that Fiji was the first Pacific island country to establish diplomatic relations with New China, Xi said since the establishment of ties 46 years ago, the China-Fiji relations have developed tremendously, an important experience from which is that the two sides have always been supporting each other on issues involving each other's core interests and major concerns.
China respects Fiji's independent exploration of a development path that suits its national conditions, and is ready to work with Fiji to push the China-Fiji comprehensive strategic partnership continuously to new levels, so as to better benefit the two peoples and jointly safeguard the common interests of developing countries, he said.
Xi emphasized that since the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic, China and Fiji have worked together through thick and thin to fight the pandemic, and their friendship and cooperation have continued deepening.
China stands ready to strengthen strategic alignment with Fiji, jointly build the Belt and Road, deepen cooperation in trade and investment, infrastructure, transportation and communication, tourism, and other fields, and continue to implement projects including Juncao and agricultural technology cooperation to help Fiji's economic and social development, Xi said.
China will continue supporting Fiji in improving its ability to cope with climate change, he said.