Norway announces USD 2.4 million towards COVID relief in India

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New Delhi, Apr 28 (PTI) Norway on Wednesday announced a contribution of USD 2.4 million to support medical services for coronavirus affected people in India.

Announcing the assistance, the Norwegian government said it stands with India in its fight against the COVID-19 pandemic.

'The Norwegian government has today announced a contribution of 20 million Norwegian Kroners (USD 2.4 million) towards COVID relief in India, to be channelled through the World Health Organization and the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies,' the Norwegian embassy said.

It said the Norwegian support will be used to scale up ambulance services, blood donation services and medical helplines, buy equipment such as oxygen tanks for ambulances and procure and distribute hygiene products to migrant workers and other vulnerable groups, among other things.

'First of all, we send our deepest sympathies and support to all our Indian friends. Norway is making a contribution to the efforts of the Indian government and its people through funds via the WHO and the Indian Red Cross Society,' Norwegian Ambassador to India Hans Jacob Frydenlund said.

'We stand with you in this time of crisis, with the hope that the second wave will recede soon,' he said.

In a statement, the embassy said the announcement about the contribution was made by Norwegian Foreign Minister Ine Eriksen Søreide, and it will be transferred at the earliest.

'There is a dynamic Norwegian business community in India also currently preparing to help in the best and quickest ways possible,' Frydenlund added.

As India battles a devastating second wave of the COVID-19 pandemic, countries around the world have announced sending medical supplies to help it tide over the situation.

The leading countries that have announced assistance to India include the US, Russia, France, Germany, Australia, Ireland, Belgium, Romania, Luxembourg, Singapore, Portugal, Sweden, New Zealand, Kuwait and Mauritius. PTI MPB KJ KJ KJ