International Cooperation Needed to Prevail over the COVID-19 Pandemic at an Early Date

Let’s hope all countries should work together to win early victory over the pandemic which will be beneficial to the development of both China and the rest of the world as well as the global economy.

Right after the sudden outbreak of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) in Wuhan, central China’s Hubei Province in December 2019, the highly contagious disease has spread out swiftly like wildfire across China. Two months later, the outbreak started to sweep over the rest of the world.

On March 11 in Geneva, assessing “the alarming levels of spread and severity and by the alarming levels of inaction” by several countries in response to spread of COVID-19, the World Health Organization (WHO) Director General Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus declared it as a global pandemic while reminding all countries of their “responsibility” to contain the spread of the virus.

As such, at this critical time, all countries must step up their cooperation to curb the spread of the macabre virus that has ravaged significant regions of the world.

As on March 12, Chinese President Xi Jinping called on the international community to take urgent action to slow the advance of the coronavirus pandemic during his phone conversation with the United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres.

The global COVID-19 outbreak calls for international action

Since virus knows no borders, with each passing day a few new countries are being added to the corona-map, posing a serious threat to the whole mankind.

Now it is a matter of grave concern that it has now emerged in more than 162 countries and territories around the world.

The rapid spread of this dreaded pathogen outside China and the overall death toll globally have sounded the alarm that the corona outbreak is no longer an ordeal to the governance of China but the entire world.

The “very grave threat” of the pandemic is a wake-up call to the world to work as a family in fighting the epidemic by taking immediate cooperative measures in order to forge “a community with shared future for mankind”.

China’s efforts to contain the outbreak is valuable to the world

A nation’s strength is tested in difficult times.

Since the outbreak of COVID-19, China’s strenuous efforts, experience including the administrative measures and the medical expertise in fighting the deadly disease is valuable to the world.

Considering the severity of China’s biggest public-health crisis in recent history, the Chinese government under the strong leadership and personal commitment of President Xi Jinping has been working hard to address the COVID-19 challenge by taking “the most comprehensive, thorough and strictest preventive measures.” The Chinese government has been working literally 24×7 to win this “People’s War,” as President Xi said.

Encouragingly, China has almost contained the spread of the virus with its “institutional preparedness” in just two months or so.

China has been able to achieve this, thanks to the help and united support of 1.4 billion Chinese people, unremitting efforts, dedication and sacrifices of Chinese medial workers under the strategic guidance of the Communist Party of China (CPC) and of course, moral support from foreign friends despite some countries’ audacious efforts to demonize China as a virus country.

According to a report released on February 28 from a mission organized by the WHO and the Chinese government: “This decline in COVID-19 cases across China is real.”

China’s anti-epidemic efforts win global praise

Although in the first half of the battle against the epidemic, China itself is the worst affected country, its remarkable progress in curbing the outbreak has earned much praise from various countries including the WHO and the UN.

The international community has promptly rallied in support of China, with world leaders expressing solidarity and lauding the Chinese government and people for their relentless efforts in blocking and combating COVID-19.

Both the WHO Chief and the UN Secretary General have effusively praised China’s timely, vigorous measures and high degree of openness and transparency in containing the outbreak on multiple occasions. Dr. Tedros highly commended China’s efforts to contain the outbreak, as the country has “set a new standard for outbreak response for other countries”.

On the other hand, Guterres appreciated China’s sharing of experience in epidemic prevention and control with developing countries and provision of such valuable assistance as medical supplies, vaccines and medicines.

United, China and other countries fight together

There are a lot of things that China and other countries can do together to clinch a decisive victory in the fight against the deadliest outbreak.

They can better do the job of communicating the cases of the novel coronavirus in more open, transparent and responsible manner as China does.

Also, there are so many things that need to be taken into consideration.

One of them is to help each other in good faith at this critical moment since nobody knows when and how this virus attacks mankind.

It is not the right time to demonize each other by taking the public health epidemic as a political tool.

Unfortunately, some countries aren’t helpful and their measures including travel or trade restrictions against China or other affected countries have been harmful in the fight against the disease.

Such practice should be stopped immediately.

International cooperation is vital to combat COVID-19 threat

Since the COVID-19 outbreak has triggered a global health scare, countries all over the world should now consolidate their efforts to combat the pandemic.

It also highlights that living in the global village, every country should do its best not only for its own citizens but also for others.

The duty of the community with a shared future for mankind is very important and very right at a time when the virus is strengthening its hold outside China across the globe.

It appears that the US has not provided the necessary data of how many people have been “really” affected from the epidemic and so on.

On the other hand, immediately after the first cases of the coronavirus were reported, the National Health Commission of China has provided timely information with the WHO and relevant countries while sharing the genome sequence data of COVID-19 with the Global Initiative on Sharing All Influenza Data (GISAID).

China has also sent medical expert teams with humanitarian relief supplies to Iran, Italy and the Philippines to help fight the epidemic.

Wuhan strategy provides vital lessons for other countries

China’s bold measures to control of the COVID-19 epidemic have offered experiences and lessons for other countries for handing the epidemic.

For example, people in Wuhan are blocked to leave the city or people from outside the city are told against entering the city and so on.

And truly, Wuhan has “turned the tide” against the deadly COVID-19 epidemic by China’s unprecedented quarantine measures as well as the concerted efforts of all 1.4 billion Chinese people.

The Chinese Government has also tightened control of overseas travel by its citizens in an effort to check the virus from spreading its boundary.

These practices can be copied by other countries to contain the outbreak.

To sum up, the COVID-19 outbreak has compelled the world to be untied in fighting the challenge. Surely, winning this epidemic war will be a history making event. And to achieve this daunting goal, the interaction and cooperation between different countries is the only choice.

China and the world will win this battle as long as all countries cooperate with each other in coronavirus-related information and experience sharing, and learning from each other instead of undermining each other or demonizing a certain country because some countries are trying to politically corner China with overreaction and planned rumours as well as “conspiracy theory” on the novel coronavirus without any evidence.

It is hoped that the western politicians, especially some US politicians do not do politics with stigmatization of China and its COVID-19 epidemic prevention and control efforts.

Let’s hope all countries should work together to win early victory over the pandemic which will be beneficial to the development of both China and the rest of the world as well as the global economy.


Rabi Sankar Bosu is an Indian contributor to Chinese media outlets. He writes about Chinese politics, social and cultural issues, and China-India relations with a special interest in the Belt and Road Initiative.