MINSK- Meeting his counterpart in the Belarusian capital of Minsk, Syrian Health Minister Wael al-Halqi underscored Friday the efforts made in Syria to upgrade the health system and provide the required national cadres through an integral joint work between the public and private sectors and cooperation with the friendly countries to secure better health services for the citizens.
Minister Al-Halqi said that large financial resources were allocated by the Syrian government for enhancing advanced health services that guarantee the safety of patients.
He briefed the Belarusian Health Minister on the challenges facing the development of the Syrian health sector, making particular reference to the sabotage acts that targeted hospitals and health and emergency centers and cadres by the armed terrorist groups.
Al-Halqi said that the number of public hospitals which were targeted by these groups reached 19, in addition to 151 health centers and more than 140 ambulances, referring to the harsh economic blockade imposed on all the service sectors in Syria including that of health.
He expressed hope that the executive program of the health cooperation agreement signed between Syria and Belarus will contribute to the integration and development of the health sector services in both countries particularly in the field of exchanging medicines and drugs.
The Minister underscored Syria's particular interest in importing milk for children and cancer drugs from Belarus and exchanging experiences and technical expertise with it.
He hailed Belarus's stances in support of the just Arab issues, especially that of the occupied Syrian Golan, and standing by Syria at the Security Council and the organizations of Human Rights and the UNESCO.
Later, at another meeting with Belarusian Deputy Health Minister Valery Shevchuk and businessmen working in the field of pharmaceuticals, Minister al-Halqi reviewed prospects of cooperation in pharmaceutical manufacturing and trade and means to develop them.
Al-Halqi also briefed them on the state of the pharmaceuticals industry in Syria, noting that it currently covers 93% of the Syrian market's needs and is also exported to Arab and foreign country, and that more money is spent on pharmaceutical research than on any other industry in Syria.
Syrian Health Minister said that the volume of Syria's pharmaceutical production is valued at USD 620 million, and that the Syrian pharmaceutical sector employs around 25,000 workers in 69 factories.
He also stressed the need to boost cooperation between Syria and Belarus in the fields of health, particularly pharmaceuticals.
For his part, Belarusian Health Minister Vasili Jarko stressed his country's interest in developing relations with Syria in the health field, highlighting the opportunities of enhancing cooperation between both countries made available by the joint agreement signed between them.