Under the EU-IGAD COVID-19 Response programme, TradeMark Africa Hands Over Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) Worth US$ 106K to Government of Djibouti in a Major Boost in the Fight Against Covid-19

As part of the EU-IGAD Covid-19 response, regional trade facilitation agency TradeMark Africa (TMA) has this morning handed over Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) worth US$ 106K to the Government of Djibouti to sustain momentum in the fight against the COVID-19 pandemic and protect the health and well-being of people in Djibouti. The handover was done at the Djibouti port, which is a key trade facility handling 8 million tonnes of cargo annually. The PPEs have also been delivered to border officials at the Guellileh border and will also be delivered to the Galafi border, key transit trade points with Ethiopia.

Today’s PPE’s delivery will cover the needs of 1000 Ports Authority staff, Port Police, Revenue Authority staff, Port health staff and sustain them for 120 days. The 1000 staff were prioritised as they are the first responders and most vulnerable dealing with port health, first aiders and handling of cargo as it arrives.  The PPE’s include hand sanitisers, liquid disinfectant, infrared thermometer, full protective coveralls, face masks, gloves and face shields.

The delivery to the Port of Djibouti is critical and strategic as the port is the main entry point into the Horn of Africa serving Ethiopia, Somaliland and South Sudan.

The equipment presented today will enhance the safety and working condition of front-line workers in key borders, which are critical arteries of trade in and out of Djibouti and her neighbours. Among the borders where the PPE will be distributed is Galafi.

Rossella Monti, Senior Project Manager, UNOPS Programme Management Unit – EU-IGAD COVID-19 Response, noted UNOPS role in mitigating the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic in Djibouti.

Under this EU-IGAD COVID-19 Response programme, we support safe trade in Djibouti by mitigating the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic in cross-border areas and protecting the health and well-being of frontline workers in border areas.”

TradeMark Africa Country Director for Djibouti Sjoerd Visser underscored the need for the country to safeguard and boost her trade and economy amidst efforts to contain the Corona Pandemic

What we have learned through this crisis is that quick action to protect the people at the front line of the ensuring critical supplies still reach where they are needed most is important; that coordinated action at the regional level is possible and that the pandemic could accelerate regional integration. It has revealed the important part that trade facilitation plays in times of crisis and especially in ensuring that producers still access markets and that essential supplies like food and medicine reach consumers. This crisis has magnified the importance of trade in ordinary development.”

The TMA Country Director further revealed that the equipment donated today is part of the EU-IGAD Covid-19 Response Programme funded by the EU, managed by UNOPS and coordinated by IGAD and implemented by TMA, IOM, GIZ, UNICEF and UNOPS. The programme seeks to ensure regional economies continue to trade in a safe way, while curbing cross-border infections.

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