Riga, June 12, 2020 — U.S. Ambassador John Carwile presented the Latvian Ministry of Defense and the Ministry of Health with two tranches of COVID-19 test-kits and associated lab equipment, supporting 4,000 tests. The United States’ contribution (approximately $200,000) to the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) solidarity fund financed the tests, which will bolster Latvia’s capability to detect, isolate, and limit the spread of the coronavirus. Deputy Prime Minister Artis Pabriks and Minister of Health Ilze Viņķele accepted the donation on behalf of the Latvian government.
Upon presenting the donation, Ambassador Carwile said, “By taking early action, Latvia has done done an excellent job reducing COVID-19 cases and protecting its residents. We are pleased to support the government’s continuing work by funding these important test kits and to show our continued commitment to our good friend and ally, Latvia.”
The U.S. Embassy’s Office of Defense Cooperation provided separate donations of $30,000 in hand sanitizer and other Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) to the Ministries of Defense and Education in May. The U.S. Embassy’s Office of Defense Cooperation works closely with the State Fire and Rescue Service and other governmental organizations, regional municipalities, schools, senior citizen homes, and orphanages. Since 2007, the U.S. Embassy’s Office of Defense Cooperation has completed more than 45 individual projects totaling more than $10 million in direct investment to the local economy as a result of using local vendors.