Ethiopia and Ethiopian Airlines have come to the rescue of Latin American nations desperately in need of medical equipment to manage the COVID-19 pandemic. The spread of the virus in South America has overwhelmed cities across the continent, and the worst of the outbreak is likely yet to come.
Poorer countries of Latin America charge that they are unable to successfully bid for equipment on the global market, while others have seen shipments seized in Europe and the United States during refueling stops.
Both European and American authorities deny deliberately withholding protective and medical equipment, but the delays happen nonetheless.
Ethiopian Airlines has expanded its cargo fleet and opened new routes.
To get around these limitations, state and federal officials in Latin America have started to use Ethiopia as a conduit for cargo from China, which has been a major boost for Ethiopia’s national airline. Besides offering significant discounts for passenger flights, Ethiopian Airlines has also expanded its cargo fleet and opened new routes to meet increased demand amid the global pandemic.
Ethiopian Airlines is currently delivering equipment to Brazil, Chile, Colombia, and Ecuador; and there are plans to fly to Argentina and Peru as well.