Bangladesh not sending experts to China amid coronavirus outbreak

  • Senior Correspondent,
    Published: 2020-01-29 00:46:56 BdST

A man wears a mask as he walks past a mural showing a modified image of the Chinese Communist Party emblem in Shanghai, China Jan 28, 2020. REUTERS

The government has no interest in sending any expert to China to study the coronavirus outbreak, the health minister has said.

Zahid Maleque was discussing the government’s preparations to tackle the situation with reporters at the Secretariat in Dhaka on Tuesday as the new virus claimed more than 100 lives in China in around three weeks.
As the flu-like virus has spread to many countries, the authorities in Bangladesh are screening passengers from China at airports to stop the spread of the disease.
A reporter asked whether the government was planning to send anyone to China to learn how the country was dealing with the outbreak after an inter-ministerial meeting on awareness and efforts on the contagious virus.
Most of the media workers and those attending the meeting broke into laughter at the time as the government is often criticised for spending millions of takas to send officials abroad so that they can gain practical experience.
“We don’t feel the need for sending any team of experts at this moment. We will consider it in future if necessary,” came the health minister’s response.
Government officials or public university teachers’ foreign tours have made headlines a number of times as they have travelled abroad spending millions of takas from the national exchequer for reasons like mastering the skills of digging pond, or purchasing things like elevators or increasing project capabilities.