The People’s Republic of China Consulate General in Davao City expressed support to the decision of Davao City Mayor Sara Duterte-Carpio in canceling the events for this year’s Araw ng Davao celebration due to the 2019 Novel Coronavirus (2019-nCoV) pandemic.
Consul General Li Lin told Edge Davao that this kind of precautionary measure is important particularly in holding celebrations that attract mass gatherings.
“We need to be alert but do not panic and not to overreact but listen to experts is the most important. My office and the Mayor’s office we have reached a consensus during this period while we are staying either in China or in Davao City in reducing all unnecessary movements,” Lin said.
Lin also said that exchange visit plans of some Chinese delegations to Davao City are also canceled due to the epidemic. He said a lot of things have been planned for instance for the People to People Exchanges program they are planning to bring in some Chinese singing and dancing groups and also traditional Chinese art like calligraphy, stone carving, and culture delegations to Davao and Mindanao.
Towards the end of spring festival, Lin said they were planning to have a singing and dancing group from Davao City’s sister city Nanning, in fact, the vice mayor of Nanning is also leading a Chinese delegation official and businessmen together with an acrobatic group to come to Davao. He said this kind of culture and people to people exchanges will also discuss to further sister city economic and trade cooperation.
Also from his home town the Fujian Province, Lin said they were also organizing a conference and meeting and invited more than 30 major companies in Fujian province to discuss about the potential of economic investment cooperation between Fujian province not only in Davao City but Mindanao as well.
“Because in Fujian you have a sister city Jinjiang and they are also interested in stepping up cooperation in making the sister cities more sustainable with more concrete economic cooperation,” he said.
Lin also mentioned that the mayor of Jinjiang City is also planning to participate this year’s Araw ng Davao. He said there is a delegation originally planned by the deputy director general of the department of commerce together with business delegation and director general from foreign affairs office who is also planning to organize a friendship delegation after the Spring Festival until the Araw ng Davao.
“There are too many I think your sister cities including Jinjing, Nanning and probably some parts of the Fujian province provincial government and friendship delegation are planning to come to Davao City after the Spring festival I think because of the epidemic they have also postponed their visit. Hopefully after everything comes back to normal they will get these plans again,” he said.
Apart from the exchange visits, Lin said some of the activities in China are also cancelled like the famous Canton Commodity Fair 2020, which is held twice a year. He also said Spring Canton Fair 2020 is also canceled wherein at least several billions worth of transactions are canceled.
“These are some of the impacts by the epidemic but I am sure that the Chinese government is taking measures to contain the virus and the epidemic. These measures are very strict but supported by the general public of China and the Chinese people are actually sacrificing themselves for the good of the nation and the good of the world. But we are optimistic and confident that the epidemic will be brought under control,” Lin said.