NEWS

Wuhan Coronavirus: Chinese Embassy In Fiji On Alert, Will Work With Government

Chinese Ambassador Qian Bo said they are working with relevant stakeholders whenever there is a reported case of persons showing symptoms of the novel coronavirus.
29 Jan 2020 13:08
Wuhan Coronavirus: Chinese Embassy In Fiji On Alert, Will Work With Government
China’s ambassador to Fiji, Qian Bo

The Chinese Embassy is on 24-hour alert and will work closely with the Government to deal with any situation when the need arises.

Chinese Ambassador Qian Bo said they are working with relevant stakeholders whenever there is a reported case of persons showing symptoms of the novel coronavirus.

“We will take rapid measures to help or caution people to quarantine themselves.”

At present, there are no confirmed cases of 2019 – nCoV in Fiji, or any other Pacific island country.

Mr Bo has urged the public to be alert and continue to do business as usual.

For Fijians living in China, the Chinese government is committed to safeguarding the safety and health of everyone in China and will in a responsible manner ensure the safety of every foreign national in China, Mr Bo said.

This includes the 7 Fijian students still in Wuhan city since the lockdown last Thursday.

“We have been closely monitoring all the Chinese citizens, travellers, tourists living in Fiji and those that are coming in from abroad.

“This is a very serious situation but we are determined to win the battle against this epidemic,” he said.

Quarantined

Two Chinese nationals have been under self-quarantine after falling ill following a flight from China to Fiji.

Mr Bo said the individual cases included a lady who had travelled with a group of tourists and a Chinese man who was transiting through to Vanuatu.

Both were examined by a Doctor and quarantined while they awaited test results.

Scholarship

Mr Bo had also confirmed that Chinese scholarships for Fijians will not be affected as a result with the current outbreak.

The new academic year will begin in September.

No Travel Ban

In a statement last night, the Ministry of Health and Medical Services reiterated that no travel bans are in place for Fiji and internationally.

“Travel bans have been proven to be ineffective in stopping infectious diseases crossing borders, and may in fact worsen the impact of an outbreak.

“Fiji did not impose travel bans during the SARS epidemic in 2003 nor the H1N1 influenza (swine flu) pandemic in 2009.

“Most countries worldwide have not implemented travel bans in response to this outbreak in China, and they are not recommended by the World Health Organisation.”

Fiji has intensified efforts to reduce the risk of the virus being introduced.

This includes early identification of cases at the international borders and in the community, targeted awareness for high-risk persons, in particular travellers visiting or returning from affected areas, and enhancing the skills and resources of health staff to rapidly respond if a case is identified.

All travellers arriving on flights from Hong Kong and Singapore undergo additional health screening.

Edited by Percy Kean

Feedback: inoke.rabonu@fijisun.com.fj

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