MANILA - Some 2,000 coronavirus disease (COVID-19) test kits donated by the Chinese Embassy and the China Mammoth Foundation have arrived in Manila on Monday morning, the embassy said.
Chinese Ambassador Huang Xilian said more test kits are expected to arrive, as well as other medical equipment and supplies such as personal protective equipment.
“Because China and the Philippines are brothers and good neighbors so we are ready to provide more test kits and other personal protection equipment in the coming days,” Huang told ABS-CBN News.
Huang said the "fast" test kit, produced by Chinese company BGI, has the capability to issue results in 3 hours and has been exported to other countries.
"The kits are not only being widely used in China. Also this kind of kits have been exported to more than 50 countries in the world and it has been proven to working quite well,” he said.
Chinese State Councilor and Foreign Minister Wang Yi, in a phone call with his counterpart Foreign Affairs Secretary Teodoro Locsin Jr on Sunday, said Beijing is "willing to do its utmost to provide more testing kits as well as other medical assistance" to the Philippines, the embassy said in a statement.
"We feel the same as the Philippine people are going through difficult times. We will do our utmost to help," Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson Hua Chunying said in a tweet.
"Medical supplies and experts will soon go to the Philippines," she added.
As of Sunday, the Philippines has recorded 140 cases of COVID-19, with 12 deaths.
The coronavirus, which emerged in China last December, has infected more than 142,000 people worldwide, as of March 14, according to data of the World Health Organization.
Last week, WHO declared the coronavirus a pandemic after it continued to wreak havoc across the world since its outbreak in Wuhan, China in January.
—Report from Willard Cheng, ABS-CBN News