India’s COVID Relief to Kiribati

On February 13, 2022, India delivered medical supplies to Kiribati after Pacific Island nation asked for help, for dealing with the first outbreak of COVID-19.

Key Facts

  • According to Ministry of External Affairs (MEA), consignment contained emergency Covid-19 medication, pulse oximeters and Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) kits.
  • Medical supplies to Kiribati affirm India’s commitment for providing humanitarian assistance and disaster relief support as early responder in Pacific region.
  • Medical supplies were put together and despatched from India, in a short span of time, despite the logistical challenges in reaching Kiribati Island.

Significance of the India’s assistance

India’s consignment of medical supplies to Kiribati affirms its commitment to provide disaster relief support and humanitarian assistance as an early responder in the Pacific region. It shows India’s commitment to extend full support to Kiribati’s national efforts in mitigating the challenges arising due to covid-19 pandemic.

India-Kiribati Relations

India and Kiribati established their diplomatic relations in 1985. High Commission of India in Suva, Fiji is accredited to Kiribati. Kiribati also maintains an Honorary Consulate in New Delhi. Both are republics in the Commonwealth of Nations. Kiribati has supported India’s candidatures in several international organizations. It was one among 34 countries to co-sponsor G-4 resolution on United Nations reform in 2005.

Bilateral trade between India and Kiribati

Trade between both the countries increased from USD 260,000 in 1996–97 to USD 1.01 million in 2014–15. Trade decreased slightly to USD 940,000 in 2015–16, as India made no imports from Kiribati then. In 2014–15, India exported USD 1 million worth of goods to Kiribati, while imports from Kiribati were plastics worth USD 10,000. Main commodities exported by India to Kiribati include sugar and confectionery, pharmaceuticals, plastics, and non-railway vehicle parts.

About Kiribati

Kiribati is an independent island nation in central Pacific Ocean. It comprises of 32 atolls and one raised coral island called Banaba.

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