In Germany, where there are nearly 30,000 patients infected with coronavirus, the purchasing office of the Bundeswehr [German armed forces, editor’s note], based in Koblenz, has been given the task of supplying the Ministry of Health with masks and other medical supplies, via several contracts with a total value of 241 million euros.
However, one of these orders, for no less than 6 million FFP2 masks, will never arrive in Germany, whereas it was expected there on March 20. Indeed, according to the weekly Der Spiegel, the cargo was “lost” in Kenya, where it was in transit.
The German military procurement office, plagued by shortages and equipment outages, normally provides logistical support to the Ministry of Health during the coronavirus crisis.
The weekly Der Spiegel, which earlier reported that the masks had disappeared at a Kenyan airport late last week, said the shipment of missing masks was one of the first major deliveries needed to gird the system of German health for its battle against the coronavirus.
The Defense Ministry spokeswoman, who confirmed the disappearance of the masks, said that the German government would not suffer any financial loss on the lost shipment, the payment for the masks being due on delivery. “We are trying to find out what happened to the order of protective equipment meeting the FFP2 standard for protection against particles and aerosols”
One of the hypotheses made by the German officials is that the supplier of these masks – which has not been specified – considered that he could obtain a better price from another customer. This is possible, given that the demand for FFP2 masks continues to grow. Or, more classic, the cargo was stolen by criminals at Nairobi airport…