By John Smith • 27 March 2020 • 12:40
CONSPIRACY theories are by definition exactly that, but there may be some credence in the criticism of the UK government for its actions in placing a 10,000 unit order with Dyson for the production of much needed ventilators.
It may be coincidence that Sir James Dyson is a long time Conservative party supporter and donor but his company has never manufactured ventilators before and they won’t be ready to supply for several weeks although the need is urgent.
Looking back a few days, the UK was invited to become part of a European Union operation to source ventilators which could have ensured quick delivery and a price benefit but the government missed out.
According to The Guardian newspaper at first a spokesman for Downing Street said “We are no longer members of the EU” but subsequently, having discovered that Britain was entitled to take part, the story changed and another spokesman said “Owing to an initial communication problem, the UK did not receive an invitation in time to join in four joint procurements in response to the coronavirus pandemic.”
There is also the matter of a firm in Nantwich which through sources in the United Arab Emirates had access to 5,000 ventilators for immediate delivery to the UK and offered these to the government through official procurement channels more than one week ago.
Having received no reply, they alerted their MP to this offer but to no avail and within a matter of days the ventilators were sold elsewhere alongside one million Covid-19 test kits.
The company said that it then found a further 500 ventilators which it offered but again without success and as reported in the Nantwich News, the eventual reply received was “Cabinet Office have confirmed and apologised for being slow to respond to all offers made via the BEIS registration page, but this has been due to the huge amounts of offers they have received.”
Another company MEC Medical told BBC Newsnight on March 25 that it was a leading manufacturer and worldwide supplier of oxygen therapy, suction, flowmeters, electric suction and regulators but it too had difficulty in receiving any initial interest to its offer of assistance.
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Married to Ophelia in Gibraltar in 1978, John has spent much of his life travelling on security print and minting business and visited every continent except Antarctica.
Having retired several years ago, the couple moved to their house in Estepona and John became a regular news writer for the EWN Media Group taking particular interest in Finance, Gibraltar and Costa del Sol Social Scene.
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