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Global oxygen tenders: Only three firms line up, for a fraction of supply

The authorities has obtained three quotations for the supply of a whole 3,500 metric tonnes of liquid medical oxygen (LMO), in opposition to its world tender for procurement of 50,000 MT imported LMO amid the surge in Covid-19 circumstances, The Indian Express has learnt.

Sources stated whereas two of the businesses which have despatched quotations are international, one is home, they usually have provided to ship the medical oxygen over three months, reasonably than the federal government’s hope of three weeks.

Among the 2 abroad suppliers, whereas Singapore-based SSB Cryogenic Equipment Pte Ltd provided to supply 200 MT oxygen, Abu Dhabi-based M/s Gulf Industrial Gases has stated it will possibly supply 1,800 MT. The third firm, Gujarat-based Ultra Pure Gases Ltd, has provided 1,500 MT.

In reality, a supply stated, the supply from Ultra Pure Gases Ltd is the one “successful quotation” as the corporate has agreed to ship 500 MT of medical oxygen this month itself.

The authorities had requested for suppliers who may present LMO in addition to had tankers/containers. “These were the only suppliers who had both. Others said they didn’t have containers,” the supply identified.

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The authorities had floated the worldwide tender on April 16 for procurement of LMO in 20-MT ISO containers for numerous hospitals of central and state governments. The authorities stated on the time that it anticipated the supply of LMO to begin inside a few weeks.

In an expedited course of, quotations have been obtained on April 21. Announcing the identical, Union Health Secretary Rajesh Bhushan had stated the federal government had obtained proposals from a number of firms. “We had given an order to import 50,000 metric tonnes of medical oxygen… We have received expressions of interest from many foreign companies. The evaluation of these is underway. We will make a decision very soon… Generally, these companies take three weeks to dispatch the oxygen.”

The supply stated the Ministry of External Affairs and Indian Oil Corporation Limited are “talking to all major companies” within the Middle East, however to this point there was “no response”. Officials stated the explanation for the tepid response from the worldwide firms is the non-availability of sufficient containers to move the liquid oxygen.

“We have to procure enough containers if we have to import. Hope that situation does not arise,” stated the supply.

In addition to the worldwide tender for 50,000 MT LMO, the Ministry of External Affairs helps import about 2,285 MT of medical oxygen. Out of this, 250 MT has arrived from Bahrain and the UAE whereas the supply from Kuwait (1,505 MT) and France (600 MT) is anticipated quickly, stated the supply.

The demand for medical oxygen has seen a sharp leap amid the second wave. As per authorities knowledge, on May 8, practically 50,000 Covid sufferers have been in ICU throughout the nation, with greater than 14,500 on ventilator assist, and above 1.37 lakh on oxygen assist.

During the primary peak in September, the best was about 23,000 sufferers in ICUs, with lower than 4,000 on ventilators, and round 40,000 on oxygen assist.

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