Chinese Ambassador to Panama: This is a global fight that the world will win together

International Exchanges

Chinese ambassador to Panama Wei Qiang believes the world will win the fight against the COVID-19 pandemic together, if the international community makes concerted efforts. April 18, 2020

As worldwide confirmed coronavirus cases top 2 million, the international community needs to make concerted efforts to fight against the COVID-19 pandemic, said Wei Qiang, the Chinese ambassador to Panama, in a recent interview with

Chinese Ambassador to Panama Wei Qiang. [Photo provided to]

"This is a global fight that the world will win together, because the virus knows no borders and every country is just one part of the global battlefield," Wei said. 

According to the latest data from the Center for Systems Science and Engineering (CSSE) at Johns Hopkins University, the coronavirus pandemic has now claimed the lives of more than 150,000 people worldwide.

The ambassador called on all countries, big and small, to stand together in this battle for the health and safety of their people.

China has worked with the international community, including Panama, to deal with the challenge, Wei said.

Since Panama recorded its first case of coronavirus on March 9, the local government has issued a variety of prevention measures in a row to encourage people to stay at home as much as possible in a bid to cut off the spread of the virus at an early date,said Wei.

Panama has so far confirmed more than 4,000 infections and reported 109 deaths, according to the country's health ministry.  

Facing the sudden appearance of such a severe pandemic, Panama was in short supply of medical resources due to the tropical country being seldomly hit by fulminating pandemics. The country is better equipped to deal with tropical infectious diseases such as malaria, yellow fever and dengue fever, according to the envoy.

The Chinese Embassy in Panama has extended a helping hand to the central American country. 

The embassy initially coordinated a video meeting attended by doctors of both countries to share their experience in fighting the disease. It also united with local Chinese companies to provide the government of Panama and the local medical authorities with medical supplies including test kits, surgical masks, protective suits, disinfectants, temperature detectors, rapid detection devices and tablet PCs, according to the ambassador.

"This is a move to return a favor with a favor," said Wei. Earlier before, the government of Panama and their people had given China strong support and assistance during the hard time of China's fight against COVID-19.

The ambassador said the joint effort made by the two countries in the pandemic fight was an example of the vision of building a community with a shared future for mankind.

He believed that any attempt to stigmatize and politicize the pandemic, as well as assigning blame rather than cooperating, is shameless, ignorant and incompetent. 

According to the ambassador, there are roughly 300,000 Chinese people living in Panama. Since the COVID-19 outbreak in Panama, they moved immediately to donate medical supplies and food to local people. 

Speaking of the pandemic's economic impact, the ambassador said the pandemic is wreaking havoc on the global economy and will inevitably negatively impact bilateral economic ties. 

Panama is the first Latin American country that has signed into the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) with China. The ambassador believed that the two sides would be able to extend post-pandemic cooperation by seeking opportunities during the current challenges.

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