TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — Taiwan is considering bringing its nationals home from India as coronavirus cases in that country spike and its health system buckles.
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MOFA) is expected to discuss citizen evacuation plans later on Monday (May 3), said Chen Chern-chyi (陳正棋), vice minister of economic affairs, at an interpellation session Monday morning.
According to Chen, 113 Taiwanese companies have established a presence in India, with investments totaling US$1.1 billion. Around 150 of the 300 Taiwanese working or doing business in the country have stayed put, UDN quoted him as saying.
MOFA and the Taiwan External Trade Development Council (TAITRA) have established a network to keep a close watch on the Taiwanese citizens there. Some businesspeople prefer not to leave, as they are concerned about the virus transmission risks of the journey home, Chen pointed out.
At least 14 have contracted COVID-19, according to Chen. The authorities will continue monitoring the situation as an assessment is conducted on the need to bring the Taiwanese home via charter flights.
A 49-year-old employee of a Taiwanese tech firm based in Gurugram died from the disease over the weekend despite inoculation with a China-made Sinovac jab. Taiwan has delivered its first batch of medical relief to India, including oxygen generators and cylinders, and imposed a new rule mandating that those arriving from the South Asian nation be quarantined in designated centers.
India registered 3,689 COVID fatalities on Sunday (May 2), the deadliest day since the outbreak of the coronavirus. As of Monday, the country has recorded over 19.5 million cases and 215,000 deaths, but many believe these figures have been undercounted.