The Chinese government is sending The Peace Ark hospital ship to central Philippines to provide medical assistance to the typhoon victims.
“The Chinese government has been following the situations closely and giving our helping hand immediately. With the situation worsens, China has been stepping up its relief assistance to the Philippines,” a statement from the Chinese embassy in Manila issued late Wednesday said.
China had initially offered $100,000 in aid but increased it to $200,000 after foreign media criticized a “regional superpower” for its measly contribution just because it has standing territorial disputes with the Philippines over the West Philippine Sea.
Beijing was known to be generous to its allies.
On November 19, the Chinese Embassy said some P73-million worth of aid has been delivered to the Philippines. This includes 10,000 blankets and 2,600 tents that can hold a capacity of six to 10 people.
Beijing is also sending more than 80 doctors and nurses to the typhoon-ravaged areas in 44 provinces.
The first batch of doctors arrived on Wednesday while a charted airplane will bring in 2,000 tents, medicines and medical devices on November 23.
The Peace Ark is the first 10,000-ton hospital ship in the world. It is said to be equipped with 217 types and 2,406 units of advanced medical systems, including a CT Scan room, digital X-Ray photographic studio, a blood bank, an oxygen generation station, compressed air system and a pharmacy.
The Peace Ark has 300 ward beds of various types, including 20 ICU ward beds, 109 ward beds for serious injury, 67 burn ward beds, 94 regular ward beds, 10 beds of quarantine ward.
China Soong Ching Ling Foundation, a nongovernment organization named after the late Chinese honorary president, is also busy preparing 200 mobile houses that are worth P22.4 million) that will be donated to the provinces of Leyte, East Samar and Bohol.
“The Chinese companies based in the Philippines have been mobilizing and organizing their staff, including local ones to extend relief helps to the victims,” the embassy said.
The Association of Chinese Companies in the Philippines has donated P7.5 million to buy three payloaders for cleaning up the disaster areas.
The China National Grid Company, the technical partner of National Grid Corporation of the Philippines(NGCP), has donated $100,000 to disaster area.
A mining company based in Eastern Samar, the Yinyi Inc., also offered help to typhoon victims.
BERNICE CAMILLE V. BAUZON