Neom (UNA-OIC) – Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud affirmed that the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) proved that international cooperation and joint action are the optimal way to overcome crises.
In his speech during the event accompanying the G20 Leaders’ Summit on “Pandemic Preparedness and Response”, King Salman said, “We must focus on the most vulnerable groups, as we will not be able to overcome this pandemic unless we ensure the availability of the necessary support for all countries of the world. We would not be safe until everyone is safe.”
The following is the full speech of the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques:
Your Majesties, Excellencies, and Highnesses,
Peace be upon you,
It is our great pleasure to welcome you to this side event accompanying the G20 Summit on “Pandemic Preparedness and Response”.
Today, we face an unprecedented global health challenge on the individuals, the community, and the economy.
Since the beginning of the pandemic and within our effort to advance the wheel and scope of the global response, we met during the extraordinary summit last March. We took swift and collective measures to counter this crisis and we all still do it.
The pandemic has proven that international cooperation and joint action are the optimal way to overcome the crises. We must focus on the most vulnerable groups, as we will not be able to overcome this pandemic unless we ensure the availability of the necessary support for all countries of the world. We would not be safe until everyone is safe.
The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia participated last April with a number of countries and organizations to launch “the Access to COVID-19 Tools-Accelerator” initiative. The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia also participated in leading the international efforts to gather donations with the aim of bridging the financing gap to meet the global need in order to develop and distribute the vaccines, medicines and diagnostic tools. The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia committed USD500 million to achieve this goal.
In light of the progress we are witnessing in developing Coronavirus vaccines, our top priority is to ensure affordable and equitable access to the vaccines, medicines and diagnostic tools for all.
This pandemic is a real test of our global health systems. During our presidency of the G20, we have benefited from a number of pivotal initiatives to address gaps in the preparedness and the response to the global pandemics.
The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia’s Presidency of the G20 also proposed, with the support of the G20 countries, launching an initiative to provide tools for combating pandemics, which aims to ensure the focus on the preparedness and the response to future pandemics in a sustainable manner. We look forward to furthering this discussion and implementation of this initiative during the Italian presidency next year.
Through our cooperation together, we will be able to achieve our goal of protecting lives and livelihoods and shaping a better world to realize the opportunities of the 21st century for all.
In this regard, we will hear a number of initiatives and best practices in this field from their Majesties, Highnesses and Excellencies.