Since bringing its coronavirus outbreak under control, China has been sending medical supplies and equipment to other parts of the world to help fight COVID-19.
Its relief efforts have included a $20 million donation to the World Health Organization (WHO), sending doctors to Iran and Italy, building a Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR) laboratory in Iraq to increase the country’s coronavirus testing capacity, donating test kits to the Philippines and sending protective equipment to Pakistan and France.
The aid has gone as far as Latin America, where China has had a significant presence through donations at a time when the region has been hit hard by the pandemic, sending medical supplies to many countries there regardless of their political ideologies.
Helmets with thermal imaging cameras that detect fevers in real time, masks and biosafety suits as well as nearly two tons of equipment have been donated by the government of Xi Jinping to the Argentine armed forces in June.
It marks the second time that China has sent medical aid to the South American country since the coronavirus outbreak. At the end of March, Alberto Fernández’s government received test kits, protective suits, masks, gloves and digital thermometers due to an agreement with the Chinese embassy.
In mid-May, Chilean Health Minister Jaime Mañalich received a plane with medical supplies at Santiago airport arranged by the Chilean Embassy in China to strengthen the country’s health system.
Chinese businessmen have donated ventilators, test kits, thermometers, 1.6 million masks and more than 230,000 medical supplies.
Colombia received an aid shipment from China on May 7 to tackle the coronavirus. The Chinese government delivered US$1.5 million worth of medical supplies.
The supplies included 30,000 nucleic acid tests, 680,000 masks, glasses, gloves, protective suits, infrared thermometers and respirators.
“We received today a donation from the Chinese government which will help our country work on the containment of the epidemic and extend its diagnostic capacity for COVID-19,” said Health Minister Fernando Ruiz on the day of the arrival.
China’s ambassador to Colombia, Lan Hu, said they have also contributed basic goods that were delivered to those in need.
“In addition to medical equipment, the Chinese embassy donated food for many households affected by the pandemic. We know that our contribution is small, but it is from the bottom of our hearts,” Lu said.
In March, Venezuela received a delegation of eight Chinese specialists to join efforts in the face of the coronavirus crisis. The team is made up of doctors and scientists who treated the virus during its peak in the Asian country.
Along with the medical mission, 22 tons of medical equipment arrived, including 500,000 test kits, ventilators, protective suits, glasses, masks and gloves.
China has also donated medical supplies to Mexico, Peru, Bolivia, Brazil, Costa Rica, Panama, El Salvador and Cuba in critical times of the pandemic.
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