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    Narrow Differences, Resolve Disputes Through Dialogue: Chinese President Xi Jinping Tells G20 Summit

    China President Xi Jinping. (File photo/AP)

    China President Xi Jinping. (File photo/AP)

    Saudi Arabia, which assumed the G20 presidency this year, is the host of the virtual summit that is bringing together leaders from the world's richest and most developed economies, such as the US, China, India, Turkey, France, the UK and Brazil, among others.

    China is ready to pursue peaceful coexistence with all countries on the basis of mutual respect, equality and mutual benefit, President Xi Jinping said on Saturday, and suggested narrowing differences through dialogue and resolving disputes through negotiation. Addressing the virtual G20 Summit hosted by Saudi Arabia's King Salman, Xi said China will always be a builder of global peace, a contributor to global development and a defender of international order.

    "On the basis of mutual respect, equality and mutual benefit, China stands ready to pursue peaceful coexistence and common development with all countries. "We may bridge differences through dialogue, resolve disputes through negotiation, and make a joint effort for world peace and development," Xi said in remarks in the backdrop of the over six-month-long military standoff between India and China in eastern Ladakh.

    Saudi Arabia, which assumed the G20 presidency this year, is the host of the virtual summit that is bringing together leaders from the world's richest and most developed economies, such as the US, China, India, Turkey, France, the UK and Brazil, among others. Prime Minister Narendra Modi is among those participating in the closed-door virtual sessions that are taking place Saturday and Sunday.

    Calling on international community to jointly fight the COVID-19, President Xi said the G20 members should help build a global firewall against the disease. "We must first put the disease under control at home and, on that basis, strengthen exchanges and cooperation to help countries in need," he said.

    Over 57,775,000 people have been hit by the deadly virus while more than 1,376,000 people have died since the pandemic emerged in the central Chinese city of Wuhan last year. Xi noted that several G20 members have made progress in vaccine R&D and production.

    We should speed up action and support the World Health Organisation in mobilising and consolidating resources and distributing vaccines fairly and efficiently. China actively supports and participates in international cooperation on COVID-19 vaccines, he said. He said China has joined the COVAX facility and stand ready to step up cooperation with other countries on the R&D, production and distribution of vaccines.

    We will honour our commitment of giving assistance and support to other developing countries, and work to make vaccines a global public good accessible and affordable to people around the world, he said. He said the G20 grouping should ensure the smooth functioning of the global economy. "While containing the virus, we need to restore the secure and smooth operation of global industrial and supply chains. We need to reduce tariffs and barriers, and explore the liberalisation of trade of key medical supplies." Xi said China has fully implemented G20s Debt Service Suspension Initiative (DSSI) and put off debt repayment totalling over USD 1.3 billion.

    We should keep our support for developing countries and help them overcome the hardships caused by the pandemic, he said addressing the G20 Riyadh Summit via video link. China supports the decision on DSSI extension and will continue to work with other parties for its full implementation, he said.

    Meanwhile, China will increase the level of debt suspension and relief for countries facing particular difficulties and encourage its financial institutions to provide new financing support on a voluntary basis and according to market principles, he said. We need to reduce tariffs and barriers, and explore the liberalisation of trade of key medical supplies. We need to further harmonise policies and standards and establish "fast tracks" to facilitate the orderly flow of personnel, he said.

    China has proposed a global mechanism on the mutual recognition of health certificates based on nucleic acid test results in the form of internationally accepted QR codes, he said. We hope more countries will join this mechanism. We also support the G20 in carrying out institutionalised cooperation and building global cooperation networks to facilitate the flow of personnel and goods, Xi said.

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