Singapore sends oxygen supplies to bolster Indonesia’s Covid fight

A Republic of Singapore Navy vessel set sail for Indonesia's Tanjung Priok yesterday morning, carrying oxygen to supplement the country's fight against Covid-19.

Senior Minister and Coordinating Minister for National Security Teo Chee Hean said in a Facebook post that the ship carried two tanks with 40 tonnes of liquid oxygen, 500 cylinders of oxygen and 570 oxygen concentrators.

The delivery came after phone calls between Indonesia's Coordinating Minister for Maritime Affairs and Investments Luhut Pandjaitan - who is coordinating the nation's Covid-19 response - and Mr Teo, said the latter in his post.

"I assured him that Singapore will do our utmost and work together to overcome this pandemic," said Mr Teo.

Yesterday's shipment of oxygen to Indonesia follows the dispatch of two planeloads of medical supplies to Indonesia from Singapore. These included ventilators, masks, gloves and gowns.

The Singapore Government dispatched the emergency oxygen supplies and equipment at Indonesia's request, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MFA) said yesterday.

"As Indonesia's close neighbour and partner, Singapore will continue to work in close cooperation with Indonesia to support their efforts to combat the Covid-19 pandemic," said the MFA spokesman.

Singapore's Foreign Minister Vivian Balakrishnan, who was at Paya Lebar Air Base to preside over a handover ceremony of the medical supplies last Friday morning, said Singaporeans stand in solidarity with Indonesia in its fight against the pandemic.

Singapore tightened border measures for travellers from Indonesia on Saturday, following a spike in Covid-19 cases there.

The Health Ministry said approvals for travellers from Indonesia who are not citizens or permanent residents of Singapore would be reduced with immediate effect.

Indonesia reported 35,094 Covid-19 cases and 826 deaths on Saturday, bringing its tally so far to more than 2.49 million cases and 65,457 deaths. - THE STRAITS TIMES