Solomons sets aside $US2.3m provision for virus threat

4:04 pm on 7 February 2020

Solomon Islands has set aside $US2.3 million towards preparatory plans to combat the Wuhan coronavirus if it reaches the country.

Honiara ferry, port, transport, Solomon Islands

Honiara. Photo: RNZ Pacific/ Koroi Hawkins

The Health Ministry's Permanent Secretary Pauline Boseto McNeil revealed the Budgetary support, reports the Solomon Star.

The way the funds would be used would depend on the unfolding situation, she said.

Solomons also had technical support and assistance from its partner agencies in the ministry. That included human resources, technical and financial assistance.

Solomon Islands' Opposition yesterday called on the government to do more to prevent the virus reaching the country.

Opposition leader Matthew Wale said he was concerned at reports that four crew members on a mining ship in Rennell had showed symptoms similar to the deadly virus.

The Solomon Star reported Mr Wale as saying the vessel was in Rennell to collect bauxite and that the crew were being monitored.

Fiji awaits test results

Meanwhile, Fiji will find out today whether it has its first case of the Wuhan coronavirus.

Sunil Chandra from the Ministry of Health said blood samples from two people sent to Australia on Monday for testing should arrive this evening.

He said the pair had been quarantined at Nadi Hospital after arriving on a flight from the Chinese city of Guangdong on Monday.

In Samoa, the government is closely monitoring Chinese agriculture-related imports in light of the novel coronavirus threat.

That's according to Samoa Minister of Agriculture Lopao'o Natanielu Mua, who stopped short of announcing restrictions on imports from coronavirus affected countries

Various countries, including Indonesia, have already imposed restrictions on imports on live animals from China due to the virus threat.

Samoa Observer reports that Samoa's government has not ruled out the possibility of implementing bans.

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