As countries across Europe rush to close their borders amidst the coronavirus pandemic, aid-filled aircraft are arriving from China.
Chinese airlines are sending medical essentials to countries across Europe as the coronavirus outbreak worsens. Among the vital supplies being flown in are face masks, hand sanitiser, and gloves.
China has been battling to control the coronavirus outbreak since the start of this year and now has its transmission problem under control (with the number of new cases being reported each day decreasing) thanks to its stringent measures and quick response.
Some of the countries to have received aid over the past number of weeks are Belgium, Spain, Prague, and the Netherlands.
On 18th March, KLM received the first shipment of aid from China from Xiamen Airlines, which is one of three Chinese airlines that partner with KLM. The airline delivered 90,000 face masks and 50,000 pairs of gloves which KLM will now distribute throughout Dutch healthcare units.
In a statement, Pieter Elbers, the CEO and President of KLM said: “Help of this nature from our Chinese partners China Eastern Airlines, China Southern Airlines, and Xiamen Airlines is both incredibly generous and much appreciated. These are incredibly difficult times for our country and our company, so we are very pleased with this support for KLM and for the Netherlands. Less than two months ago, we at KLM made a donation to China and now we have received fantastic and generous help ourselves. This certainly feels good.”
On Monday 16th March, China Eastern Airlines delivered 300,000 face masks to Belgium. The following day, the airline returned to Europe with a shipment of 500,000 face masks for locked down Spain.
There have also been reports of Chinese aid deliveries in the Czech Republic.