Bridgetown, Barbados June 23, 2021 (PAHO) - On June 22, 2021, two containers with a shipment of 924,000 medical masks, a donation from the Federal Republic of Germany arrived at the PAHO / WHO Barbados Office for distribution to Barbados and the Eastern Caribbean Countries to support covid-19 efforts.
The delivery is part of Germany's donation of 250 million masks worth USD 327 million to the World Health Organization (WHO) for distribution to the countries hardest hit by Covid-19. The PAHO / WHO office for Barbados and the Eastern Caribbean Countries will allocate the 924,000 masks to the Eastern Caribbean countries according to their needs.
In a handover ceremony which took place on June 23, 2021, Dr. Yitades Gebre, PAHO / WHO Representative for Barbados and the Eastern Caribbean countries expressed gratitude for the donation. He said, "This generous donation facilitated by Germany will greatly expand the current public health and social measures, and enhance preparedness to address health emergencies. Sincere appreciation to the Government of Germany for providing this life saving tools for the people of Barbados and the Eastern Caribbean Countries. "
"The donation is not only a provision of humanitarian aid in times of crisis but also an acknowledgment of the long-standing friendship and diplomatic relations between the region and German. 500,000 of these masks will go to Barbados. There is ample scientific evidence that medical masks and KN95 masks play a critical role in preventing the covid-19 infection, "said German Honorary Consul to Barbados, Mr. Andreas Kusay.
On behalf of Senator the Hon. Jerome Walcott, Minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade in Barbados, Ms. Trecia King also expressed appreciation of the donation of masks. She said "Barbados and Germany have long endured close relations for fifty-four (54) years and have cooperated in a number of areas over the years. Barbados attaches great importance to the relationship with Germany and considers Germany to be a true friend."
In accepting the masks from German Consul Mr. Kusay, Lt. Col. Hon. Jeffery Bostic acknowledged appreciation on behalf of the Prime Minister and people of Barbados. He said, "Over the last several months I came to the realization and understanding as to how important it is to wear a mask in fighting this virus. The donation of masks by the Federal Republic of Germany will go a long way towards helping us in continuing with this fight. "
The mask donation is only one part of Germany's efforts to fight the Covid-19 pandemic globally. The country has committed to provide a total of USD 2.63 billion to support the Access to Covid-19 Tools Accelerator, the global collaboration to accelerate the development, production and equitable access to new COVID-19 diagnostics, therapeutics and vaccines, including the COVAX scheme , making Germany the second largest donor. In addition, the country will donate 30 million vaccine doses for poorer countries by the end of the year.