|Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Wang Wenbin's Regular Press Conference on July 8, 2021|
Xinhua News Agency: According to local media reports, Senegal's President Sall thanked China for its funding and technological support for the Diamniadio park while attending a ground-breaking ceremony for the park's phase two projects. Do you have any comment?
Wang Wenbin: First, warm congratulations on the ground-breaking of Diamniadio park's phase two projects! The park is a flagship of the country's national development strategy "Plan for an Emerging Senegal" (PES). It is also the latest outcome of China-Africa cooperation in promoting sustainable development with the concept of "building nests to attract phoenixes".
The first phase projects of the park were financed by the Senegalese government and contracted by Chinese companies. Many enterprises including Chinese ones have already established business there. The second phase is financed by the Chinese side. The two sides have overcome the impact of COVID-19 and completed the initial stage of work. After the recent ground-breaking, the projects are scheduled to be completed by 2023. To date, more than 20 producers in various sectors like pharmaceutical, electric appliances and textile have expressed interest in setting up operations there. Just as President Sall said, once completed, the park will play a positive role in improving Senegal's economic structure and realizing import substitution. It is expected that 23,000 local jobs will be created before 2023. The UN Industrial Development Organization's representative to Senegal spoke highly of the projects' contribution to the country's industrialization.
Progress in the Diamniadio park epitomizes how China and Africa have worked hand in hand to fight COVID-19 and boost economic recovery. It also embodies the two peoples' spirit of solidarity, cooperation, hard work and perseverance. China stands ready to continue working together with Senegal and other developing countries including those in Africa to achieve more concrete cooperation outcomes and deliver benefits to the people.
Reuters: There has been a record number of COVID deaths in Thailand and Indonesia in the past 24 hours, as well as a spike of infections in Myanmar and Vietnam. Is the Chinese foreign ministry concerned about this, and does it have any plans to change its border policy with Southeast Asia?
Wang Wenbin: We've seen relevant reports. The pandemic is still ongoing in many parts of the world. In light of the evolving global situation, China will decide on prevention and control measures in a coordinated way based on science and professional advice with a responsible attitude towards the life and health of Chinese and foreign citizens. At the same time, we stand ready to work actively towards the healthy, safe and orderly cross-border flow of people.
CCTV: It was announced at yesterday's press conference of the State Council Information Office that the number of giant pandas in the wild has exceeded 1,800 and the species has been downgraded to "vulnerable" from "endangered". Do you have any comment?
Wang Wenbin: This is great news. We are glad to see one great story after another in China's ecology conservation efforts. The living conditions of rare and endangered species in the wild such as giant panda, Tibetan antelope and the milu deer have all been improved. Appearances of mysterious species such as the Chinese mountain cat and rufous-necked hornbill were once again captured. We've seen Siberian tigers paying visits to villages, wild Asian elephants on a northward journey and a whale spotted in Shenzhen's Dapeng Bay. The concept that lush mountains and clear water are worth their weight in gold and silver has taken root among the public in China. Respect for, harmony with and protection of nature has become a conscious choice for all levels of government and the public.
I would also like to stress that the ecology and environment bears on the wellbeing of all humanity, and international cooperation is essential to protection efforts. As a participant and pacesetter contributing to global ecological endeavors, China practices multilateralism and works towards an equitable and sound global environmental governance system featuring win-win cooperation. The Eco Forum Global Guiyang 2021 will be held this month with the theme of "Low-carbon Transition, Eco-Development－Building A Life Community of Human and the Natural World Together". In October, China will also host the 15th meeting of the Conference of the Parties to the Convention on Biological Diversity. We stand ready to work with all sides to strengthen international cooperation in ecological preservation and environmental management to jointly protect the beautiful planet we all call home.
Shenzhen TV: Russia's Finance Ministry has completed the asset structure adjustment to the country's sovereign wealth fund the National Wealth Fund (NWF). The shares of the Chinese yuan was increased to 30.4% from 15%. What's your comment?
Wang Wenbin: We welcome Russia's decision to significantly increase shares of the renminbi in its sovereign wealth fund the NWF. It shows Russia's confidence in the prospects of China's economic growth and China-Russia cooperation. We will continue to deepen mutually-beneficial bilateral cooperation, offer each other support in regional and international affairs and safeguard our shared interests.
AFP: British lawmakers urge their government to take tougher action against China over its treatment of minority groups in Xinjiang. They suggested boycott of the Beijing Winter Olympics and a cotton trade ban. Do you have any comment on this?
Wang Wenbin: I already answered a similar question yesterday. I would like to reiterate that China firmly opposes the politicization of sports, and the interference in other countries' internal affairs by using human rights issues as a pretext. Some people attempt to disrupt, obstruct and sabotage the preparation and convening of the Beijing Winter Olympic Games out of political motivation. All sectors of the international community, including the governments and Olympic committees of many countries, and the International Olympic Committee, have all expressed their clear opposition to such practice that is doomed to fail.
China Review News: An Australian official recently said that the claim Australia was undermining China's vaccine aid to Papua New Guinea was "absolutely not the case". Do you have any comment to this?
Wang Wenbin: There's detailed and in-depth media coverage on how Australia has obstructed and sabotaged China's vaccine cooperation with Pacific island countries. Rather than deny it all, it is advisable for the Australian side to state publicly that it welcomes China's vaccine cooperation with Pacific island countries and stands ready to work with China to help the countries fight COVID-19 and safeguard people's health.
CNR: The US Departme