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China and Maldives Hold 7th Round of Diplomatic Consultations

2021/01/26

On January 26, 2021, Vice Foreign Minister Luo Zhaohui co-hosted the 7th round of China-Maldives diplomatic consultations with Maldivian Minister of State for Foreign Affairs Ahmed Khaleel via video link.

Luo Zhaohui said that in the context of changes unseen in a hundred years and once-in-a-century pandemic, serious world economic recession, and prevailing unilateralism and de-globalization, China and Maldives supported each other, effectively contained the virus spread in their countries, and actively promoted economic recovery. The two countries have set an example of mutual benefit and win-win results and equality between big and small countries. Both sides need to make continuous efforts to push forward their bilateral relations. First, they need to deepen anti-pandemic cooperation by carrying out vaccine cooperation, sharing experience of pandemic prevention and control, providing assistance with anti-pandemic supplies and enhancing cooperation in the fields of non-traditional security, such as poverty alleviation, food security and public health. Second, they need to support economic recovery. The two countries need to facilitate the resumption of work and production of Belt and Road cooperation projects, promote the early entry into force of the China-Maldives free trade agreement, and explore the resumption of tourism cooperation after the pandemic. China is actively implementing the "G20 Debt Service Suspension Initiative". Third, they need to expand the fields of bilateral cooperation and enhance exchanges and cooperation in culture, youth, education, healthcare, agriculture and the ocean. Fourth, they need to strengthen multilateral coordination and cooperation, carry forward the tradition of mutual support on multilateral occasions, safeguard the international system with the United Nations at its core and the international order underpinned by international law, uphold multilateralism, and maintain communication and cooperation on climate change and other issues of common concern.

Ahmed Khaleel said that the Maldivian government attaches great importance to its relations with China, firmly supports the one-China principle, and considers the relationship with China as one of the most important bilateral relations. Maldives is grateful for China's invaluable support to Maldives's fight against the pandemic and its economic and social development, and looks forward to carrying out vaccine cooperation with China, discussing the resumption of direct commercial flights between the two countries and tourism cooperation, and pushing forward the bilateral relations. Maldives highly appreciates China's firm defense of multilateralism and economic globalization and stands ready to enhance multilateral communication and coordination with China and cooperate with China in climate change and other fields.

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