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China has asked Switzerland to ramp up its production of key components for ventilators after Beijing producers complained they were struggling to keep up with global demand amid the coronavirus pandemic.
Chinese producers said they have also run into red tape by the different quality standards in different countries, which has slowed down getting much-needed ventilators and other equipment into hospitals and health care centers combatting the novel coronavirus.
"Countries such as Switzerland are suppliers of important components for ventilators," China's Foreign Minister Wang Yi said. "We hope Switzerland can increase their supply substantially to help enterprises increase production and alleviate the urgency of countries."
The South China Morning Post reported Wang and his Swiss counterpart Ignazio Cassis spoke on the phone and that Switzerland agreed to increase its production.
As estimate released Wednesday by EastMoney said the United States, Britain, France, and Italy will need 1 million ventilators to combat coronavirus. New York City is expected to need 30,000 by the end of April.
Huang Libin, director of China's Ministry of Industry and Information Technology told the Hong Kong-based paper that parts shortages, foreign quality standards and tighter rules placed on China's medical exports, are the top reasons China can't expand production at a faster rate.
Recently, China has been hammered by several countries for delivering substandard test kits and protective gear.