Xi Jinping promises to prioritize Africa for COVID-19 vaccine

Chinese President Xi Jinping promised on Monday that China will give developing countries, especially in Africa, priority access to COVID-19 vaccines once one is developed and put into use. 

He made the remarks during a phone call with Morocco's King Mohammed VI. 

Xi thanked Morocco for its help and support to China at the early phase of the pandemic and said China also sent medical supplies to Morocco when the virus broke out in the country. 

A vaccine is of vital importance for human beings to overcome the pandemic, Xi said, adding that once China develops one, it will become a global public product. 

The Chinese president said China is willing to work with Morocco to push forward the research and development of the vaccine. 

He also called on the country to jointly safeguard multilateralism and the health and safety of all people around the globe. 

Xi encouraged Chinese enterprises to invest in Morocco and said China is willing to work with the North African nation to enhance bilateral cooperation under the framework of the Belt and Road Initiative. 

The king said Morocco is glad to have a strategic partner like China and his country has achieved sound development thanks to bilateral cooperation. 

He said he hopes the two sides can deepen cooperation in areas such as trade and technology to bring more vitality to their ties. 

The king said Morocco firmly supports China's stance in issues concerning its sovereignty and security and is willing to enhance further cooperation in the research and development of a vaccine for COVID-19.