The Government of Switzerland extending its support to Sri Lanka in addressing the unprecedented impact of COVID-19, has funded the installation of new, semi-automated Roche Diagnostics RT PCR-Testing machines at Bandaranaike International Airport (BIA), Embassy of Switzerland to Sri Lanka and the Maldives said.
Switzerland government also provided 39,000 COVID RT-PCR test kits.
This collaboration is a testimony to the excellent long term bi-lateral relationship as well as the ongoing Migration Partnership between Switzerland and Sri Lanka with the purpose of supporting the government’s efforts of safely repatriating migrant workers who are stranded overseas due to COVID -19.
This newly installed advanced equipment at the BIA is the first of its kind in Sri Lanka and significantly increases the testing capacity enabling 1,300 RT-PCR tests per day with a turnaround time of approximately three hours. Switzerland believes this arrangement would considerably contribute and facilitate the safe and speedy return of Sri Lankan migrant workers, the embassy said.
The One Million US Dollar project is implemented by the International Organization for Migration in close collaboration with the Ministry of Health, the World Health Organization, the Airport and Aviation Services Limited and other relevant stakeholders.
Switzerland has also supported a number of other COVID 19 Emergency Response projects in Sri Lanka since March 2020.