Samoa gets more than half a million from China to fight pandemic

The Government of Samoa has received more than half a million tala from China to assist with its coronavirus pandemic response.

The funding of US$200,000 (T$548,000) is part of a total funding of US$1.9million donated by China to  Pacific countries.

The donation was confirmed in a press release issued by China's Embassy in Samoa on Tuesday.

"The Chinese government decided to donate 1.9 million US dollars in cash to Samoa and other Pacific Island countries to fight COVID-19," the release reads.

"The fund amounting to 200,000 US dollars has been transferred to the Samoan Government to support its efforts in preventing the outbreak of the pandemic."

The Embassy added they hope China's assistance will strengthen the protection of Samoa from the virus.  

“We believe that under the all-round timely and effective measures taken by the Samoan Government and with the concerted efforts of all parties, Samoa will triumph over this pandemic,” the statement reads.

Other foreign support for Samoa’s COVID-19 preparedness includes the World Bank delivering US $5.1 million ($12.75 million tala) in immediate funding to support Samoa’s response to the global coronavirus pandemic.

According to the Minister of Finance, Sili Epa Tuioti during the announcement of the Samoa’s Second Supplementary Budget, he said that the Asian Development Bank has offered through its Contingency Disaster Facility – $8,218,324.

“This Facility is similar to the World Bank’s CatDDO and was established to assist member countries’ immediate response to natural disasters,” he said.

“However, due to the catastrophic effects of the Coronavirus this has now been opened to include the pandemic and released to assist in preparatory and preventative measures of all member countries including Samoa.”

The Government of New Zealand also offered budget support for COVID19 of $9,080,553 added Sili. 

“This assistance is from the Government of New Zealand injected directly into the Budget to assist in any sectoral response to the Coronavirus.”

The Government of Japan also pledged US$643,061 ($1.82m) to assist the Samoan government in procuring medical equipment in its coronavirus pandemic response.

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