Chinese multinational technology company Huawei has donated R1m to the South African department of health to support the efforts to lessen the spread of Covid-19.
In addition to the donation by Huawei, the South Africa-China Economic and Trade Association also contributed R2m.
“The money will be used for testing and managing the outbreak,” said health minister Zweli Mkhize at the Chinese embassy in Pretoria on Monday.
Mkhize said the donation was an important milestone of friendship, solidarity and partnership from Huawei and and other chinese businesses. Mkhize showed appreciation to China for looking after South African nationals in China, and confirmed that South Africans in China remain unaffected despite the 80,000 total infections in the country.
Huawei South Africa CEO Spawn Fan said: “We are a committed ICT and social partner to South African business, government and society; this donation is our obligation as a concerned party.”
Fan also said that digital connectivity would help make the management and containment of the virus more efficient.
“We believe in the power of connectivity and technology, and we are committed to harnessing ICT in the fight against coronavirus in South Africa and on the continent. In China, we saw the success of remote education, remote health services and working from home during quarantine periods. Coronavirus is not just a threat to life, its knock-on effects on livelihoods and the economy must also be managed.”
A week ago, billionaire founder of alibaba.com, Jack Ma, donated one million coronavirus test kits to Africa.