ICS Analysis

China, WHO and the Covid-19 Pandemic

The Covid-19 pandemic spreading cross the world, has caused enormous and unprecedented health problems in terms of infected humans and deaths , overloaded health system capacities, as well as caused major economic losses. There has been considerable criticism of China and the WHO over their responses to this outbreak especially in the media. The US has been in the forefront of the critics, contrasting China’s response with that of Taiwan, and adding fuel to the growing US-China geopolitical rivalry and existing differences over issues such as trade, technology, finance, human rights, etc.  The US has announced its withdrawal from WHO.This situation  adversely impacts the international coherent and unified response to the Covid-19 pandemic, as well as the effective functioning of multilateral mechanisms which are essential to deal with a growing list of global problems. This article analyses the underlying causes of the present situation, and  presents some positive scenarios for the road ahead.

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Dr Bhaskar Balakrishnan

Former Ambassador and Science Diplomacy Fellow, RIS
bhaskar.balakrishnan@gmail.com

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