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Developing a response to the unprecedented crisis in India is an incredibly difficult challenge and beyond the government’s ability to tackle it alone. In the news, there are stories of taxi drivers delivering oxygen tanks, and local hospitals sourcing their own equipment from Turkey, bypassing normal government procurement.

Olam International is now also becoming involved by initially donating 300 oxygen concentrators to the Government of Tamil Nadu to support treatment centres across the state and has partnered with Temasek, Singapore Airlines, SATS, Air India, Kerry Logistics, the Pan IIM Alumni Association and the High Commission of India in Singapore to get medical equipment where it is needed in India.

Private companies are often better at responding quickly and may have more experience in organising logistics than bureaucratic government departments, so it is encouraging to see a big organisation like Olam working inside a coalition to see what they can do to contribute to the support and relief efforts.

The company states in a press release:

Since Sunday, May 2, the partners have sent 200 oxygen concentrators, 51,000 oximeters, 825 hospital-grade BiPAP machines and 30 tele-ventilators from Singapore to India, and continue to work towards providing more essential medical supplies to the country.  

The company says it is continuing to find ways in which it can offer support on the ground while working hard to procure and distribute medical supplies to COVID treatment centres across the country.

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