The New Zealand government has extended about PHP64.25 million in assistance to support the Philippines’ response against coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19), the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) said.
The assistance, to be channeled through the International Organization for Migration (IOM), will prioritize the vulnerable communities affected by the pandemic in Mindanao, according to the DFA.
Foreign Affairs Secretary Teodoro Locsin, Jr. conveyed Manila’s appreciation during a meeting with Ambassador Peter Francis Tavita Kell at the DFA Office.
Both sides then shared experiences in combating the coronavirus, comparing notes on areas of successes and remaining challenges.
During the meeting, Ambassador Kell also thanked the Philippine government for the repatriation of over 500 New Zealand nationals when the community quarantine measures were imposed in the country.
“Ambassador Kell conveyed New Zealand’s support for the Philippine government’s measures to contain the health emergency,” the DFA said.
Aside from the Covid-19 response, the two diplomats also discussed cooperation in defense, trade, development, and people-to-people relations, as well as regional and multilateral developments involving peace and stability.
“Both sides reaffirmed their governments’ commitment to further elevating overall ties and cooperation,” the DFA added. (PNA)