New Delhi, February 23: India on Sunday said it has restricted the export of certain medical equipment to China, where the coronavirus outbreak has claimed over 2000 lives so far, in view of the limited stock of those types of equipment in the country. Chinese charity organisations and certain medical institutes claimed that India had restricted the export of medical products to China following the coronavirus epidemic in that country. Coronavirus Outbreak: Major Headway in Fight Against COVID-19, Candidate Vaccine Ready For Pre-Clinical Tests.
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"Some restrictions have been imposed on export of certain medical equipment in view of the fact that these items are in short supply here too," Raveesh Kumar, spokesperson of India's Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) said in a statement. He asserted that steps taken by India were in accordance with an advisory issued by the World Health Organisation or WHO, which has declared the coronavirus outbreak a global public health emergency. Coronavirus in Kerala: All Three Patients, Who Were Quarantined For Testing Positive of COVID-19, Discharged From Hospital.
"Just like any other country, India with a billion-plus population has the responsibility to take the necessary measures to combat the spread of the COVID-19 outbreak which if not properly managed can become a global risk," Kumar added. Earlier today, Chinese Embassy Spokesperson Ji Rong said China hoped that India will review the situation arising out of the coronavirus epidemic in the country in an “objective and rational” manner.
“It is hoped that the Indian side could review the epidemic situation in an objective, rational and calm manner, handle with China’s much-needed items in a cooperative and constructive way, and resume normal personnel exchanges and trade between our two countries as soon as possible,” Ji said, adding that the WHO has repeatedly opposed any travel and trade restrictions on China following the coronavirus outbreak.
Last week, Chinese Ambassador Sun Weidong urged India to review restrictions on trade and movement of people. Almost all Indian airlines have stopped flights to China while the government has cancelled all e-visas as well as normal visas issued to Chinese citizens. On Saturday, government sources said that China was “deliberately delaying” permission for an Indian Air Force plane to coronavirus-hit Wuhan to supply relief materials and bring back more Indians from the city.