Showing support for global efforts in fighting the novel coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic, Vietnamese businesses have joined hands in providing the United States with nearly 1.3 million face masks and about 100,000 non-skid pairs of socks.
The Vietnam Chamber of Commerce and Industry (VCCI) hosted the donation ceremony last Friday, June 5.
During the event, Dr. Vu Tien Loc, chairman and president of VCCI, acknowledged that although the contribution was modest compared to the United States’ real demand for medical supplies, it was still “a beautiful gesture from Vietnamese businesses and organizations toward the Americans during the difficult period.”
According to VCCI, the aid was provided by Dony Garment Co. Ltd., AIC Group, Tan Dai Hung Plastic J.S.CO., SENGROUP, OneStep Vietnam Co. Ltd., Oxalis Adventure, Tuong Nguyen charity group, and several others.
Giving away 100,000 antibacterial and anti-droplet cloth masks with a total value of over VND10.5 billion (US$451,300), Dony Garment was one of the businesses that wanted to express gratitude to the United States’ previous support for Vietnamese people during the pandemic.
Pham Quang Anh, director of Dony Garment, said his company had been significantly impacted by the pandemic, both in good and bad ways, so it understood what kinds of adversity that other firms and people around the world were suffering.
“At a time when the disease is spreading in other countries, including the United States, we want to contribute more to the international community. Since the beginning of the pandemic, we have allocated five percent of Dony's entire revenue, from apparel to cloth masks, to the community,” Anh said.
On behalf of Operation USA, the unit that would receive and distribute the shipment in the U.S., U.S. Ambassador to Vietnam Daniel Kritenbrink expressed his appreciation for the Vietnamese government, VCCI, and the sponsors.
“In English, we have a saying that ‘A friend in need is a friend indeed.’ It means that if you find yourself in a difficult situation and you need help, you will find out who your true friends are because your true friends come forward and help you,” he said, adding that the U.S. had made new friends in Vietnam through the event.
Concerning the pandemic situation in the U.S., Kritenbrink was positive that the States would successfully make it through, acknowledging that the help from the Vietnamese businesses and organizations would be a factor in the country’s success.
“From the first day of the pandemic, there have been so many private companies and individuals here in Vietnam [that] reached out to the U.S. Embassy, offering donations of medical supplies as American frontline workers were facing the threat from COVID-19,” he stressed.
The diplomat also praised Vietnam’s success in COVID-19 prevention and control which plays a crucial role in the nation’s economic recovery.
As of Monday, the United States had about 1.98 million confirmed cases and around 112,000 deaths from COVID-19.
While planning to gradually reopen the economy, the country remains vigilant for risks of the pandemic spreading.
The United States had made efforts to assist other countries in disease prevention. Specifically, it has provided Vietnam with $9.5 million for disease prevention.