Coronavirus Pandemic

G20 summit opens as Saudi, UAE seek joint Covid-19 pandemic response

Wam, AP/Riyadh
Filed on November 21, 2020 | Last updated on November 22, 2020 at 05.36 am
Wam file photo

"We have a duty to rise to the challenge together during this summit and give a strong message of hope and reassurance," King Salman said.

Saudi Arabia and the UAE on Saturday asked the world to offer a united response to tackling the coronavirus pandemic as the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques, King Salman bin Abdulaziz of Saudi Arabia, opened the Group of 20 summit.

“We have a duty to rise to the challenge together during this summit and give a strong message of hope and reassurance,” King Salman said in his opening remarks. Saudi Arabia has presided over the G20 this year and is the summit host.

His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, who participated in the virtual G20 summit as the current chair of the GCC, said the UAE took part with the aim of coordinating joint efforts and promoting global cooperation to contain Covid-19.

Sheikh Mohammed praised Saudi Arabia’s presidency of the summit and the great efforts it made under the wise leadership of King Salman.

Sheikh Mohammed described the G20 as the world’s largest platform to overcome challenges and to discuss ways to utilise countries and governments’ potential for a better future to the world.

“Today, the world is facing the same risks and humanity shares a common destiny,” he added.

“The entire world is going through critical time, anticipating an end to this crisis. This calls for collective efforts and international cooperation to ride out the Covid-19 crisis, to build strong, sustainable, and inclusive growth and recovery in all sectors and to mitigate any health, economic and social impacts,” Sheikh Mohammed said.

Sheikh Mohammed renewed the UAE’s support to the group and its goals of boosting poor countries’ capabilities to deal with the current crisis. “The UAE looks forward to contributing to the G20’s agenda and joint action to make the world better for future generations.”

With progress being made in developing a vaccine, King Salman said G20 countries “must work to create the conditions for affordable and equitable access to these tools for all peoples”. He also urged G20 leaders to provide support to developing countries.

“I am confident that the Riyadh summit will deliver significant and decisive results and will lead to adopting economic and social policies that will restore hope and reassurance to the people of the world,” King Salman said.

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