Taiwan donates 500,000 surgical masks to Canada

Apr 28 2020, 7:30 pm

Taiwan’s government has donated 500,000 surgical masks to Canada for distribution across the country in communities that are facing shortages.

The masks, made in the island state, will be distributed to frontline healthcare workers, including 400,000 to the Canadian federal government, 50,000 to Ontario, 25,000 to British Columbia, and another 25,000 to Alberta. Distribution is being handled by the Canadian Red Cross.

“We are deeply grateful for Taiwan’s donation of surgical masks to Canada… Taiwan’s generous donation will help save lives,” said the federal government’s Canadian Trade Office in Taipei, in a bulletin on Tuesday.

“Canada and Taiwan are working to combat COVID-19 through scientific exchanges, technical exchanges and commercial cooperation. Friendship based on shared values makes us natural partners in our pursuit of a better, safer, healthier world. We salute the innovative and timely actions taken by Taiwan to control the spread of the virus.

“We appreciate Taiwan’s efforts to share its expertise and experience with the global community. We thank our Taiwanese friends for their generosity and compassion.”

This comes from Taiwan’s surplus stock of masks, as it has been able to rapidly scale its homemade production of masks from about two million per month in January to close to 17 million per month in April.

As a measure of international diplomacy, Taiwan plans to donate 10 million masks to countries hit hard by the coronavirus.

Taiwan has been impacted by China’s increased attempts to isolate the democratically governed nation and weaken its sovereignty, which is considered by the Chinese communist government in Beijing to be a “renegade province.” It has been unable to participate and contribute to the World Health Organization’s pandemic strategy due to China’s new influence within the organization.

The country is also able to provide relief to other nations as it has been able to contain and control its epidemic due to its early strategic measures, including the closure of its borders, use of masks, and the enforcement of quarantines through smartphone tracking.

To date, there have been just 429 total cases and six deaths of the coronavirus in the densely populated country of 24 million people.

The government of Taiwan has also created an app that encourages its citizens to donate surplus masks to countries in need.

Kenneth ChanKenneth Chan

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