Dr. Livingston Taulung and Ambassador Huang Zheng signing documents during the turnover of medical supplies and cash donation from China.
Photo courtesy of FSM Information Service
Palikir, Pohnpei — The Federated States of Micronesia has received medical supplies and $100,000 in cash donation from China to assist the Pacific nation in its efforts to fight Covid-19 pandemic.
“Today is a reflection of the joint pursuit of the great idea of building a community with a shared future—because we are all connected,” Huang Zheng, China's ambassador to FSM, said during a handover ceremony on April 14. “It is our strong belief that the most basic human right is the right to existence. Both the Chinese government and the Chinese people stand in solidarity with the FSM Government and people in this global fight against this global challenge.”
The donations were received by Livingston A. Taulung, secretary of the FSM Department of Health & Social Affairs and chair of the Covid-19 Task Force,
Huang noted that he is working to acquire a second shipment of medical supplies, to include ventilators, for the FSM.
“We have a saying that when you drink water, never forget the well-digger,” Huang said. “We always remember those brothers and sisters who have helped China when China is in need of friends."
Huang recalled that FSM President David W. Panuelo and Speaker Wesley W. Simina wrote to Chinese officials when Covid-19 first broke out in Wuhan, expressing from the FSM government and its people. "China will always be a true friend indeed of the FSM; you can count on us for support,” Huang said.
Taulung thanked Huang "not only for the supplies and the monetary contribution to our efforts in preventing and mitigating the Covid-19 threat, but for the continued great friendship between the FSM and China, where the respect of human rights and the respect for each other is paramount.”
Taulung said China also offered to introduce Chinese medical experts over video conferences with the FSM’s health officials and staff. "I’ll put that as one of my priorities,” Taulung told Huang. “We need to learn from your expertise, and I think we’ll consider that a way forward.”
Following the handover ceremony, Panuelo issued a statement, expressing gratitude to Chinese President Xi Jinping, Premier Li Keqiang, Ambassador Huang Zheng, and Yang Chuantang, special envoy to the FSM and vice chair of the Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference.
“In our more than 30 years of diplomatic relations, China has consistently demonstrated its sincere interest to collaborate
with the FSM, and with the global community, to improve the standard of living," Panuelo said. "Whether it’s physical infrastructure such as the Chuuk State Government Complex or the forthcoming FSM National Convention Center, tackling food security such as through the Pohnpei Pilot Farm, or humanitarian aid such as these medical supplies and kind donation of financial support, the fact that China helps our nation and our citizens so diligently and so earnestly is truly humbling and inspiring.”
Like climate change, the president added, the coronavirus is a threat that can only be successfully countered and eliminated with collective efforts. "I applaud China for taking both Covid-19 and climate change seriously, and thank China for its assistance to our nation. Thank you, China, for your Great Friendship and for your ongoing support to the people and Government of the FSM,” Panuelo said.