Saudi Arabia to supply more oxygen, containers to India

NEW DELHI, May 31 (INP): The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia will be increasing its aid to India by shipping another shipload of liquid oxygen, as the Asian country battles a second wave of COVID-19.

According to Saudi Gazette that this new aid follows last month’s shipment of 80 tons of liquid oxygen to India and the current aid package will see three more containers with 60 tons of oxygen and another 100 containers to ferry them.

Saudi Arabia is shipping to India more medical oxygen and tankers for ferrying them as it increases aid for the nation fighting the world’s worst outbreak of COVID-19 pandemic, the Press Trust of India reported.

“Last month, Saudi Arabia shipped 80 tons of liquid oxygen to India and now three more containers with 60 tons of oxygen and another 100 containers to ferry them,” the Hindu reported PTI as saying.

“Deeply appreciate the gesture of Prince Abdulaziz, Minister of Energy, KSA for the offer to send 3 ISO Containers with 60 tons of LMO, which are expected to arrive in Mumbai on June 6, 2021, and also to provide 100 ISO containers in the coming months to support #IndiaFightsCorona,” Oil Minister Dharmendra Pradhan tweeted.

India has turned to OPEC nations, particularly Saudi Arabia, UAE and Kuwait for sourcing medical oxygen in its battle against the pandemic.

Earlier this month, Pradhan discussed with Saudi Energy Minister Prince Abdulaziz, UAE Minister of Industry Sultan Al Jaber and Qatar’s Energy Minister Saad Sherida Al-Kaabi for the supply of medical oxygen and containers.

“The 3 containers and the additional containers that will come in the weeks ahead will remain with @IndianOilcl for 6 months as a goodwill gesture from the Saudi government, and IOCL will source LMO from Linde Dammam on commercial terms for import into the country,” Pradhan tweeted Saturday.

Coronavirus infections have dropped from over 4 lakh to 1.73 lakh, but officially recorded daily deaths at 3,617 continue to be high.

“My discussions with Prince Abdulaziz during this month, and his consistent support for India’s efforts against the COVID-19 pandemic, is indeed a manifestation of our deep friendship and familial relations which ultimately forms the core of all our interactions,” he said.

Meanwhile, Kuwait will continue to provide assistance and support to India as it tackles a “worsening situation” as a result of the coronavirus pandemic, Foreign Minister Sheikh Dr. Ahmad Nasser Al-Mohammad Al-Sabah said on Friday.

In a phone call with his Indian counterpart, Kuwait’s foreign minister, who doubles as State Minister for Cabinet Affairs, reiterated his country’s commitment to providing New Delhi with “all the essential requirements” it needs during these “difficult circumstances” amid the ongoing spread of the COVID-19 variant.

For his part, India’s Minister of External Affairs S. Jaishankar expressed his country’s appreciation and gratitude for this supportive stance, saying it reflects the depth of historical relations between the two friendly countries.