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China to provide Kyrgyzstan with COVID-19 vaccines, $ 54 million grant

Bilateral talks between the Foreign Affairs Minister of Kyrgyzstan Ruslan Kazakbaev and a member of the State Council, Minister of Foreign Affairs of the People’s Republic of China Wang Yi took place on May 11 in Xi’an city (China). Press service of the Foreign Affairs Ministry reported.

The heads of ministries discussed a wide range of issues of Kyrgyz-Chinese cooperation.

«Much attention was paid to further expansion of export of agricultural products from Kyrgyzstan to China, optimizing the activities of Torugart and Irkeshtam checkpoints, increasing trade turnover, implementation of grant projects in Kyrgyzstan, construction of China — Kyrgyzstan — Uzbekistan railway, settling the state debt of the Kyrgyz Republic to China, attracting targeted Chinese investments in the economy of Kyrgyzstan, promotion of joint infrastructure projects within the framework of One Belt, One Road initiative,» the statement says.

It is noted that Minister Wang Yi highly appreciated the efforts of Kyrgyzstan to peacefully resolve the conflict situation at the Kyrgyz-Tajik state border.

Ruslan Kazakbaev expressed gratitude to the leadership of the PRC for providing the Chinese vaccines free of charge in the amount of 150,000 doses, and other assistance to combat COVID-19 in Kyrgyzstan.

During the talks, the Minister Wang Yi informed about the decision of the Chinese side:

  • To provide the Kyrgyz Republic with the second batch of Chinese vaccines in the amount of 150,000 doses as humanitarian aid on a gratuitous basis;
  • To allocate a grant to support the economy of the Kyrgyz Republic in the amount of 350 million yuan (about $ 54 million);
  • Not to charge additional payments for deferring payments on the state external debt of the Kyrgyz Republic to the PRC;
  • Send Chinese specialists involved in implementation of grant projects to Kyrgyzstan, which were temporarily suspended due to the COVID-19 pandemic;
  • Consider providing food aid to the country.

In addition, the head of the PRC Foreign Ministry expressed interest of the Chinese side in increasing the volume of exports of organic agricultural products from Kyrgyzstan to China, additionally including potatoes, beans, rapeseed and grapes in this list.

The parties also agreed to make further efforts to optimize operation of Torugart and Irkeshtam checkpoints in order to increase their throughput.

Following the talks, a program of cooperation between the two foreign ministries for 2022-2023 was signed.

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