Moon praises China’s vaccine diplomacy ahead of his Washington visit

Posted on : 2021-04-21 17:33 KST Modified on : 2021-04-21 17:33 KST
The Quad is seeking to check China’s vaccine efforts to increase influence in Asia
South Korea President Moon Jae-in speaks in a video message sent to the opening ceremony of the Boao Forum for Asia hosted by China Tuesday.
South Korea President Moon Jae-in speaks in a video message sent to the opening ceremony of the Boao Forum for Asia hosted by China Tuesday.

South Korean President Moon Jae-in voiced his support for China’s diplomatic outreach using the COVID-19 vaccine in a video message sent to the Boao Forum for Asia, which was held Tuesday in the Chinese province of Hainan. In the message, Moon credited the Chinese government for its efforts to donate vaccines to the developing world.

“Joint action on COVID-19 needs to begin in Asia. The Chinese government deserves considerable credit for its various efforts to support developing countries in their fight against COVID-19, including donating vaccines. South Korea will also keep increasing cooperation on defeating COVID-19 through fairly distributing vaccines, facilitating the movement of workers, and making bold fiscal investments,” Moon said.

According to documents provided by the Korea Institute for International Economic Policy, China is building its influence overseas by supporting vaccines for 53 countries suffering from COVID-19 and exporting the vaccine to 22 other countries.

In response, the four countries of the Quadrilateral Security Dialogue, or Quad for short — the US, Japan, Australia, and India — announced in March that they would combine American technology, Japanese funding, and Australian logistic capacity to greatly expand India’s output of vaccines for distribution in Southeast Asia and other areas. In effect, the four countries are seeking to check China’s efforts to increase influence in Asia through its distribution of COVID-19 vaccines.

Just when the US is closely following China’s vaccine aid, Moon expressed his support for China’s “vaccine diplomacy.”

“No country can win in the war against COVID-19 through its own strength alone, without consideration for its neighbors,” Moon said in his message, calling for the equitable supply of vaccines. His remarks appear to be aimed at the US, which continues to buy up more COVID-19 vaccines developed by its pharmaceutical companies despite already having secured more than enough vaccines for its population.

This is the first time Moon has delivered a speech at the Boao Forum, which China hopes will become an Asian version of the World Economic Forum in Davos.

This year’s forum consisted of a blend of meetings held in person and remotely. There was also a real-time virtual summit between the leaders of seven countries: South Korea, China, Indonesia, New Zealand, Singapore, Cambodia, and Mongolia.

The theme of this year’s forum is “A World in Change: Join Hands to Strengthen Global Governance and Advance Belt and Road Cooperation.”

“I offer my sincere congratulations on the 20th anniversary of the establishment of the Boao Forum for Asia. Through this forum, the countries of Asia have realized the spirit of ‘qiutong cunyi’ — pursuing common differences while accepting each other’s differences,” Moon said.

Moon went on to emphasize more inclusive multilateral cooperation, joint action on COVID-19, action on climate change, and cooperation on innovation and new technology.

By Lee Wan, staff reporter

Please direct comments or questions to []

button that move to original korean article (클릭시 원문으로 이동하는 버튼)

Related stories

Most viewed articles