COVID-19 medical kits arrive - Solomon Star News

COVID-19 medical kits arrive

23 April 2020
Officials from the Chinese Embassy handing over the COVID-19 equipments to representatives from the Government led by Minister of Mines and Energy, Bradley Tovosia. [Photo: Ian Kaukui]

THE COVID-19 medical kits donated by the Peoples’ Republic of China (PRC) have finally arrived in the country on a special flight operated by Solomon Airline airbus, Wednesday.

The equipment was part of the US$300,000 (SBD2.5m) assistance from China which was signed by the Foreign Affairs Minister Jeremiah Manele and His Excellency Yao Ming of the Chinese Embassy in Honiara last week.

The kits are to support the country’s efforts to fight against the entry and spread of COVID-19.   

The consignment includes lab equipment and testing kits purchased from a Chinese Company BGI (Beijing Genomic Institution) and is part of China’s USD300,000 donation to the Solomon Islands.  

A statement from the Chinese Embassy in Honiara said apart from lab equipment and testing kits, some PPE donations from China also arrived on the same flight.

“Because of the global lockdown/travel ban/flight cancellations, transporting the consignment faced a lot of difficulties,” he said. 

It further stated that the embassy, OPMC, BGI, and relevant agencies have collectively collaborated to ensure the COVID-19 medical supplies get to their final destination.

It's understood that the flight route began in China, Hong Kong, Manila, Sydney, Brisbane, and finally to Honiara.

“The embassy already facilitated a video conference between BGI and OPMC, MHMS, NRH last month (March) before the consignment was dispatched for Honiara.

 “BGI is continuing to provide assistance to SI to facilitate the establishment of a testing lab so that cases can be tested domestically. With the arrival of the consignment, the testing centre will be set up soon,” it was stated.

The statement further added that some donated medical supplies have already arrived over the weekend onboard two cargo vessels and will be donated to the Ministry of Health, Guadalcanal Province, and Honiara City Council later this week. 

“The PPE donations are from Guangdong Provincial Government (sister province of Guadalcanal), China Harbor Engineering Company, Jia Shu Rong He International Trade Company, and Solomon Chinese Association,” the statement said.

Founded in 1999, BGI is one of the world's leading life science and genomics organizations and its mission is to use genomics to benefit mankind and to be a leader in the field of life sciences. 

With businesses in more than 100 countries and regions around the world, BGI has established cooperation and partnerships with thousands of different organizations across multi-disciplinary research areas including medical health, resource conservation, and judicial services. 

At the same time, BGI provides equipment, technical support, and solutions for the needs of national economies and people's livelihoods such as precision medicine and health.