Minister González Laya launches “Dialogue to defeat COVID-19” together with seven of her Ibero-American counterparts

The Minister for Foreign Affairs, European Union and Cooperation held a meeting by video-conference on Monday with her counterparts from Argentina, Felipe Solá; Chile, Teodoro Ribera; Colombia, Claudia Blum; Costa Rica, Rodolfo Solano; Ecuador, José Valencia; Mexico, Marcelo Ebrard; and Peru, Gustavo Meza-Cuadra, as well as with the Ibero-American Secretary-General, Rebeca Grynspan whose incalculable support has been essential for ensuring that this meeting was held. Aside from the minister, Spain was also represented by the State Secretary for Foreign Affairs, and for Ibero-America and the Caribbean, Cristina Gallach; and for Digitalisation and Artificial Intelligence, Carme Artigas.

The “Dialogue to defeat COVID-19” initiative arose from the need to step up contact with other countries, particularly close partners such as those in Ibero-America, to collaborate on the spread and implementation of practical solutions to defeat the pandemic. “Faced with a crisis with such serious consequences, society is rising up to create innovative solutions in all areas. A fundamental part of diplomatic work is to share these responses, promote contacts and cooperation between countries and societies”, remarked Minister González Laya. “The aim is thus to implement supportive diplomacy for effective action”, she then added.

The ministers present shared useful initiatives that are being developed in their countries and which may be of common interest, ranging from technological solutions, health material, international trade, financing and ideas for the de-escalation of lockdown measures, to the economic recovery.

As well as these issues, the ministers spoke about aspects relating to international relations during the pandemic, and explored ways to continue with dialogue, through themed meetings on subjects of special interest. “If our public managers, health systems, research teams and social stakeholders join forces, they may come up with more responses, and we will become more effective in tackling this crisis”. Stepping up dialogue, both in terms of the number of participants, and in the fields of cooperation, is and will remain essential for defeating this pandemic.

The Ibero-American Secretary-General, Rebeca Grynspan, closed off the video-conference with a message that called for cooperation in these times of great difficulties. “Our shield to limit the suffering caused by this crisis lies in internal, regional and global public policies”.









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