DUBAI: Saudi Aramco has come to the aid of the US city of Houston, Texas, with a donation of 30,000 masks for first responders fighting the coronavirus COVID-19 outbreak in the heart of the American oil industry.
A statement from Aramco Americas said: “We are supporting efforts to protect fire, police and health responders in Houston through a donation of 30,000 KN95 masks to help the city and the major of Houston, Sylvester Turner.”
The mayor responded: “We know that medical supplies and protective equipment, like these masks, are in short supply throughout the US. We are fortunate to have a great corporate citizen like Aramco utilizing its procurement and global supply chain to source this quantity of masks during this challenging time.”
Most recent statistics show Texas with 18,923 cases of the disease, a daily increase of 663, and 477 deaths. The biggest number are in Harris County, which contains the densely populated city of Houston.
Turner said Aramco works side-by-side with local government and other charitable organizations to address issues ranging from education, hunger and environmental protection.
Mohammed Alshammari, president and chief executive of Aramco Americas, said: “The safety of our employees and the community is a top priority for us. Houston has been our headquarters for nearly 50 years.
“This donation is one of the ways we are looking to help the city during these challenging and difficult times,” he added.
As the business center for the American shale oil industry, Texas is also facing a wave of financial challenges as a result of falling oil prices in the wake of the global collapse in demand for crude.