Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said his government would not pay almost eight million substandard medical grade masks sourced from China.
The N95 mask was part of an 11 million shipment, of which only one million was found to meet Canadian standards while another 1.6 million were still undergoing testing.
During a media briefing, Trudeau was categorical to the Federal Government who refused to pay for substandard personal protective equipment, because he said the country “will not pay for masks that do not meet the standards and quality we want for our front-line workers. “
This problem has further hampered relations between Canada and China, which also suffered after a senior executive of Chinese company Huawei, Meng Wanzhou, was detained by authorities in Vancouver in late 2018, and China retaliated by arresting two Canadians including a diplomat.
Trudeau perhaps further upsetting China by openly thanking Taiwan for the “generous donations” of 500,000 masks to Canada. Canada is also part of a group of countries, led by the United States and Japan, seeking observer status for Taiwan in the World Health Organization, a move strongly opposed by China, which does not recognize the existence of Taiwan as a separate nation.
Trudeau also said discussions regarding broken masks were ongoing with suppliers based in Montreal, which had not yet been identified. “We will not be burdened with masks that do not meet our stringent requirements,” he said.
This is not the first time Canadians face problems with masks like that from China. Last month, one million such masks imported from China turned out to be damaged.
Early last month, the country’s largest city, Toronto, returned nearly 62,000 masks to Chinese vendors. At that time, the Mayor’s office noted in a statement, “After the report tore and tore, further examination of the mask determined that the mask ordered did not meet the city standards and specifications. The mask is being returned, and the vendor has committed to a full refund. “
Canadian officials privately told the country’s media that Chinese vendors, supported by Beijing, had spoiled themselves by gouging “competitive markets” for such protective equipment, inflating prices up to five times the pre-pandemic level.
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