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LA County signs US$ 1.25 mil. deal with S. Korean biotech firm, Seegene, to buy 20,000 COVID-19 testing kits Updated: 2020-03-26 10:12:00 KST

The U.S. county of Los Angeles has put pen to paper on a deal with South Korean biotech company, Seegene Technologies, to purchase 20-thousand coronavirus testing kits.
The L.A. City Council and the city's Board of Supervisors said in a press release that it will spend 1.2-5 million U.S. dollars immediately due to a major shortage of diagnostic reagents across the U.S.
The statement also said a larger contract is in the works, as the company has committed to providing 100-thousand testing kits a week to L.A.
The first batch will be dished out to medical professionals and first responders.
Amid surging demand for South Korean testing kits, Denmark's health minister has apologized for refusing a helping hand extended by Seoul to supply testing kits to Denmark.
According to local media on Wednesday, the minister said he was sorry for declining the offer and admitted countries like South Korea and Taiwan had handled the outbreak well.
He has come under fire as the country's medical staff is experiencing a major shortage of testing kits, following the government's decision to expand the target of the screening from only healthcare providers and those who show severe symptoms.
Meanwhile, South Korea's presidential office will set up a task force team this week to deal with the flood of overseas demand for South Korea's COVID-19-related supplies.
The team will be comprised of officials from several related ministries.
The decision comes as Seoul's foreign ministry confirmed nearly 50 countries have requested or made inquiries about South Korea's coronavirus testing kits.
Kim Hyo-sun, Arirang News.
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