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Joint Statement of China-Pacific Island Countries Foreign Ministers' Meeting
2021/10/21

On 21 October 2021, the People's Republic of China and Pacific Island Countries with which it has diplomatic relations held the first foreign ministers' meeting via video link. The meeting was chaired by State Councilor and Foreign Minister Wang Yi of China and attended by President and Foreign Minister Taneti Maamau of Kiribati, Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Josaia Voreqe Bainimarama of Fiji, Prime Minister Pohiva Tu'i'onetoa of Tonga, Premier and Foreign Minister Dalton Tagelagi of Niue, Minister for Foreign Affairs and International Trade Soroi Eoe of Papua New Guinea, Minister of Foreign Affairs, International Cooperation and External Trade Marc Ati of Vanuatu, Secretary of Foreign Affairs Kandhi Elieisar of Federated States of Micronesia and Minister of Foreign Affairs and External Trade Jeremiah Manele of Solomon Islands. Secretary General of the Pacific Islands Forum Henry Puna attended the meeting upon invitation. All parties at the meeting had an in-depth exchange of views and reached important consensus on the relationship between China and Pacific Island Countries, fight against COVID-19, exchanges and cooperation in various fields, international and regional issues and other topics of shared interest.

1. All parties reviewed the development of the relationship between China and Pacific Island Countries since Chinese President Xi Jinping met with leaders of Pacific Island Countries having diplomatic relations with China in 2018. All parties agreed that their comprehensive strategic partnership featuring mutual respect and common development has steadily deepened and cooperation in various fields has produced fruitful outcomes, promoting the prosperity of the Pacific islands region and the well-being of the peoples of China and Pacific Island Countries.

2. Pacific Island Countries conveyed warm congratulations on the centenary of the Communist Party of China (CPC) and spoke highly of the great achievements in national construction made by the Chinese people under the leadership of the CPC. The Chinese side expressed gratitude and reaffirmed that it will, as always, firmly support the endeavors of the people of Pacific Island Countries for a better life.

3. All parties agreed that all countries, regardless of their size, strength and wealth, are equals. All parties advocate peace, development, equity, justice, democracy and freedom, which are the common values of humanity, and the building of a community with a shared future for mankind.

4. All parties reaffirmed respect for each other's independence, sovereignty and territorial integrity, support for each other's people in independently choosing a development path suited to their national conditions, and mutual understanding and support on issues involving each other's core interests and major concerns. Pacific Island Countries reaffirmed that they firmly abide by the one-China principle and stressed the importance of upholding the principle of non-interference of internal affairs in international relations.

5. All parties agreed to enhance high-level exchanges and interactions at all levels, expand exchanges and cooperation between governments, legislatures and political parties, strengthen exchange of governance experience, and steadily increase mutual understanding and political mutual trust. All parties agreed to establish a mechanism of regular meetings between foreign ministers of China and Pacific Island Countries.

6. All parties spoke positively of their cooperation against COVID-19 since coronavirus struck. Pacific Island Countries commended China's major strategic achievements in containing the virus, and thanked China for actively providing medical supplies, vaccines, and financial support. China commended Pacific Island Countries for taking proactive and effective measures to control the spread of COVID-19 in the region, and expressed gratitude for their invaluable support to China's fight against the virus. All parties reaffirmed that they will strengthen cooperation against COVID-19 and work for a community of health for all. China announced that it will establish a China-Pacific Island Countries reserve of emergency supplies.

All parties underscored the need to make vaccines a public good and expressed opposition to any attempt to obstruct vaccine cooperation. China stands ready to continue to provide vaccines to Pacific Island Countries in need and contribute to achieving vaccine accessibility and affordability in Pacific Island Countries.

All parties shared the view that origins tracing of COVID-19 is an issue of science and a global task which should be and can only be undertaken by scientists around the world through joint research.

7. All parties agreed on the need to steer global development toward a new stage of balanced, coordinated and inclusive growth, speed up the implementation of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, pursue more robust, greener and more balanced global development, and build a global community of development with a shared future. Pacific Island Countries welcomed the Global Development Initiative proposed by President Xi Jinping at the general debate of the 76th session of the UN General Assembly and expressed readiness to support and join this important initiative to ensure alignment with the Pacific Roadmap for sustainable development and the 2050 Strategy for the Blue Pacific Continent. All parties emphasized that they will step up cooperation in various areas under the framework of the Belt and Road Initiative to realize common development. China announced that it will establish a China-Pacific Island Countries poverty reduction and development cooperation center and hold, within this year, a China-Pacific Island Countries fisheries cooperation and development forum.

8. China stated that it will continue to support and assist Pacific Island Countries as it can in economic development and livelihood improvement. Pacific Island Countries thanked China for its longstanding and selfless assistance, and pointed out that China's assistance has played an important role in promoting economic and social development of Pacific Island Countries. All parties called on the international community to provide more technological, financial and humanitarian support to Pacific Island Countries to help them achieve independent and sustainable development.

9. All parties agreed to continue to strengthen exchanges and cooperation in such fields as education, culture, health and sports and between social groups such as the media, women and religious communities, and expand subnational interactions and cooperation. All parties supported China in hosting the Beijing 2022 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games, opposed the politicization of sports, and called on the international community to jointly safeguard the sound development of sports across the world.

10. All parties agreed that it is important to promote the practice of true multilateralism, abide by the purposes and principles of the UN Charter, uphold the international system with the UN at its core and the international order based on international law, and work together for a new type of international relations. All parties agreed to step up communication and collaboration in the UN and other multilateral institutions on major topics such as implementation of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, reform of the UN Security Council and response to climate change, with a view to jointly safeguarding the common interests of developing countries.

11. All parties agreed to enhance maritime cooperation, support the 2050 Strategy for the Blue Pacific Continent, work for a blue partnership, and jointly promote sustainable marine development. All parties emphasized that ocean environment protection is of vital importance to the people's health and safety as well as sustainable economic development of the Pacific Island Countries, called on relevant country to prudently handle the issue of discharging Advanced Liquid Processing System (ALPS) treated water into the ocean, and have full consultation with stakeholders and relevant international agencies. All parties reaffirmed their firm position of upholding the international non-proliferation regime with the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons as its cornerstone and the South Pacific Nuclear Free Zone, and called on the relevant parties to fulfill treaty obligations and promote regional peace and stability.

12. All parties shared the view that climate change is a major challenge facing humanity and are committed to jointly promoting the full and effective implementation of the Paris Agreement and a fair and equitable system of global climate governance for win-win cooperation. China understands the special difficulties of Pacific Island Countries in tackling climate change, and will set up a China-Pacific Island Countries climate action cooperation center and continue to assist Pacific Island Countries as it can in enhancing capacity building to tackle climate change under the framework of South-South cooperation.

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