Japan announced that it will provide ¥1.5 billion (US$14 million) for health and medical equipment to strengthen Laos’s response to COVID-19.
The globalization of goods, services, and supply chains has made COVID-19 a major threat to social and economic conditions throughout the world, including Japan. According to the Japanese government's press release, COVID-19 needs to be tackled by nations together. The government stressed the importance of preventing the spread of the virus in countries with weak healthcare systems, not only for the nation’s public health but also to prevent the further spread of COVID-19 to other countries.
According to the press release, although COVID-19 is not yet widespread in Laos, the healthcare system is extremely fragile and the virus could potentially spread throughout Laos and the Mekong region. Therefore, the funds will provide Laos with health and medical equipment such as ambulances and medical beds to strengthen the healthcare system.