With Cabo Verde slowly emerging from a lockdown to contain the spread of Covid-19, the local Association of Chinese Companies donated on Monday 6.5 million escudos (EUR 59 thousand) to the country, which will be channeled to the National Emergency Fund to fight the new coronavirus pandemic. The local government has praised Chinese support, by companies and the State.
The symbolic delivery of the cheque took place at the Government Palace, in the city of Praia, and was made by the president of the local Association of Chinese Companies, Zhang Dengquan, to the president of the National Emergency Fund (FNE), José Luís Semedo.
On behalf of the Government of Cabo Verde, the National Director of Political, Economic and Cultural Affairs, Júlio Morais, underlined that the act “symbolizes” the human nature and comprehensiveness of the relations between the two countries and the two peoples. “The manifestation of solidarity of the People’s Republic of China towards Cabo Verde at this juncture continues to be special and very welcome and very well valued by Cabo-Verdeans”, he stressed.
“In addition to the two waves of bilateral aid, in addition to the aid from the Embassy, the two waves of aid from the Jack Ma Foundation, it would also be unfair not to mention the various support we had from Macau,” continued the Government official.
Speaking on behalf of 10 Chinese companies in Cape Verde, Zhang Dengquan noted that Covid-19 has already spread all over the world and represents a major risk for the Cabo-Verdean population, requiring a joint global response. “Our companies are also part of the Cabo-Verdean society, have a responsibility to participate in the prevention of this disease and have an obligation to participate with the Cabo-Verdean people in the fight against the pandemic”, stressed the businessman.
The president of the National Emergency Fund (FNE), José Luís Semedo, thanked the Chinese businessmen for the “noble gesture of solidarity”, guaranteeing a “methodical management” of the donation, to the more urgent needs.
On Friday, the Association of Chinese Merchants in the city of Praia offered more than 40,000 masks to the Cabo Verde Ministry of Health and Social Security, as part of the fight against the new coronavirus in the archipelago.
Chinese merchants on the various islands of Cape Verde have offered various equipment, such as masks and protective screens, money and food to various local institutions, to deal with the effects of the new coronavirus.
Cabo Verde has recorded an accumulated total of 260 cases of covid-19, since the first on March 19, spread over the islands of Santiago (201), Boa Vista (56) and São Vicente (3). 59 patients are considered recovered, and two people died, one in Praia and another in Boa Vista.
The United Nations Economic Commission for Africa (ECA) estimates that a one-month full lockdown across Africa would cost the continent about 2.5 per cent of its annual GDP, equivalent to about USD 65.7 billion per month.