SUVA, April 6 (Xinhua) -- China donated on Friday 40,000 Fiji dollars (about 20,000 U.S. dollars) worth of disaster relief equipment to Fiji to help the South Pacific Island state speed up the recovery work after tropical cyclone Josie hit Fiji last weekend and caused six deaths and property damages.
During a hand-over ceremony of the equipment, which was also attended by Fiji's Minister for Agriculture and National Disaster Management Inia Seruiratu, Chinese Ambassador to Fiji Qian Bo assured Fiji of China's unwavering and reliable support whenever needed by the Fijian people.
"China has always been a steadfast and reliable development partner of Fiji. This has been proved in the past and will continue to be proved true in the future," he said.
The ambassador said that the Chinese Embassy has been keeping in close contact with Fiji's National Disaster Management Office and learnt that chainsaws and portable water pumps are much needed equipment for cleaning up the disaster affected areas.
Therefore, the embassy decided to donate to the Fijian government a batch of disaster relief equipment including chainsaws, portable water pumps, hoses and rescue ropes with a total value of 40,000 Fijian dollars (about 20,000 U.S. dollars).
"We hope the equipment can help to speed up the recovering work, life in those areas can return to normal and children can return to school at an early date," he said.
For his part, Seruiratu thanked the Chinese government and the Chinese people for their steadfast support towards Fiji in difficult times.
Reiterating that natural disasters such as tropical cyclones were the new norm, Seruiratu said that this is how climate change has been affecting Fiji and other Pacific Island Countries.
Fiji is developing its Disaster Risk Reduction Policy and hopes it would help the country prepare better for the future with more resilience, he added.