On 29 April 2020, SCO Secretary-General Vladimir Norov had a telephone conversation with Vice Minister of Foreign Affairs of China Le Yucheng.
The officials exchanged views on the issues of the coronavirus pandemic and the SCO's efforts to counter its spread.
Mr Norov noted that due to resolute and effective measures of the Chinese government and the stamina and high responsibility of the Chinese people, efforts to counter the coronavirus in the country have produced positive results. The world gained two months of precious time, and China's success inspired many countries to take effective and resolute measures.
He emphasised that regular briefings by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of China during the pandemic have allowed the public at large and the international community to receive authentic and specific information on the situation, which later allowed other states to assess the threat and take preventive measures.
The assistance rendered by China to many countries is making a substantial contribution to the global fight against the pandemic.
Mr Norov informed Mr Le Yucheng about the work of the SCO Secretariat on coordinating the efforts of the SCO countries in this context. Thus, he noted the meeting of experts from the health ministries of the SCO countries on April 1 via videoconference, which was chaired by Russia. The participants reviewed the epidemiological situation in their countries and discussed the prospects for enhancing cooperation on countering COVID-19. Considering the deteriorating epidemiological situation in the world in general and in the SCO member countries in particular, the Secretariat made a number of proposals on improving the mechanisms for cooperation in the SCO at the level of health ministries and sanitary-epidemiological agencies.
The Secretary General noted that it is important to hold a videoconference with the foreign ministers of the SCO member states for a practical discussion of joint actions on overcoming the pandemic and reducing its socioeconomic consequences.
In turn, Vice Minister of Foreign Affairs of China Le Yucheng noted the vigorous activity of the SCO Secretariat and the topicality of its proposals.
He emphasised that as an SCO member, China would continue promoting cooperation in different areas, including the efforts to counter the COVID-19 virus.
Mr. Le Yucheng expressed confidence that through a concerted effort the SCO member countries would make further successes in the organisation's progress.
He also informed Mr Norov about China's experience in countering the coronavirus and cooperating with other countries in this respect.
In conclusion, the officials noted that it is unacceptable to politicise the pandemic which is a global challenge to the entire international community and which requires a concerted effort by all states.