PRESS RELEASE 114
Ministry of Foreign Affairs defends a strategic partnership with WHO for tackling COVID-19 and other challenges for global health system
16/07/2020

The Spanish Minister for Foreign Affairs, the European Union and Cooperation, Arancha González Laya, met earlier today with the Director-General of the World Health Organisation (WHO), Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, who attended this morning’s tribute to mourn the victims of COVID-19.

Minister González Laya spoke with Dr. Tedros about the COVID-19 pandemic situation and the ways in which it might be overcome. She also thanked him for all the support given to Spain over the course of these months. She recognised the WHO’s leadership of the United Nations System’s response to the health emergency and stressed that multilateral action, global cooperation and solidarity are essential for overcoming the current challenge.

The Spanish minister said that the COVID-19 crisis shows us that we must strengthen the global health system and its components, therefore welcoming the WHO decision to launch an independent assessment process on the global response to the pandemic.

The global efforts to discover vaccines and medicines against COVID-19 were also discussed at the meeting. Arancha González Laya stressed her opinion that the vaccine and medicines against COVID-19 should be considered as a public universal asset to which equal access should be provided.

The two leaders agreed that the so-called “one health approach” should be promoted for integrating the human, animal and environmental aspects of health, and they discussed the health and climate initiative launched by Spain, the WHO and other relevant partners at the Climate Action Summit of the Secretary-General of the United Nations (September 2019).

Minister González Laya highlighted the Spanish Agency for International Development Cooperation’s support for the WHO, which will be increased more than three-fold this year and will contribute three million euros to the WHO’s Strategic Preparedness and Response Plan for COVID-19 and pay special attention to Latin America, among other priorities.

During the course of the conversation with the Director-General of the WHO, the Spanish minister also emphasised the need for the international community to adopt a new global pact for health based on the 2030 Agenda - the best roadmap for recovery from the crisis, she said - and a green and sustainable socio-economic recovery.

 

 

-NON OFFICIAL TRANSLATION-

 

 

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