The privately chartered Suparna flight touched down at Sydney Airport on April 8 with 70 tonnes of personal protective equipment (PPE) from Wuhan, the reported epicentre of the COVID-19 outbreak.
The 500 cubic metres of cargo included one-million face masks, protective gowns, goggles, gloves, shoe covers, antiseptic wipes and coronavirus testing kits which have been hard to find in some parts of the country.
But according to 7NEWS.com.au, the Australian Government did not request or accept what was boarded on the plane.
The Suparna privately chartered flight touched down at Sydney Airport on April 8
Pictured: Airline employees and cargo handlers dressed in protective gear are seen at Sydney Airport
The flight arrived in Australia as countries across the globe desperately scrambled to get their hands on medical supplies during the health crisis.
The increased demand also led to suppliers driving up the prices of PPE.
The Boeing 747, which touched down at about 9.30pm, flew out of Sydney back to Wuhan the following morning.
According to the publication, it left with 11,298 tins of Viplus baby formula and 35,000 kilograms of Tasmanian Atlantic salmon on the aircraft.
The Australian Government will not confirm how much the Chinese delivery was on offer for but it seems as though the price tag was too much as the deal did not go through.
A spokesman from the Department of Health told 7NEWS.com.au there were ‘a number of approaches offering products at inflated prices’.
Pictured: Airline employees and cargo handlers dressed in protective gear are seen on the plane in the dead of night
The 500 cubic metres of cargo included one-million face masks, protective gowns, goggles, gloves, shoe covers, antiseptic wipes and coronavirus testing kits
The flight is understood to have been organised by Sydney-based Chinese entrepreneur Yuan ‘Richard’ Zuwen, who declined to give details about the aircraft’s arrival in Sydney on April 8.
‘Quite a number of local and Chinese business communities have been involved in the 8 April shipment, I am not in the position to comment at this stage,’ he said in a statement.
Yuan said the baby formula would be ‘donated to the Hubei Youth Development Foundation which will distribute the goods to key hospitals, schools, children’s health centres, kindergartens and nursing homes’.
Pictures taken at Sydney Airport on April 8 showed airline employees and cargo handlers dressed in protective gear as they appeared to unpack the plane in the dead of night.
One man in a hazmat suit was seen carrying away a small box. The crew members headed from the tarmac to the Rydges Hotel at the International Airport.
The flight is understood to have been organised by Sydney-based Chinese entrepreneur Yuan ‘Richard’ Zuwen (pictured with Prime Minister Scott Morrison)
The plane travelled nine hours non-stop from the Chinese city, which had only just started to ease strict lockdown restrictions introduced on January 23 to rid the region of the deadly respiratory infection.
Crew were entitled to a hotel stay for the duration of their stopover in Australia, but were expected to self-isolate during that period.
‘International crew are permitted to transit through Australia but must remain in the port or airport, or self-isolate in accommodation for the duration of their transit,’ a Department of Home Affairs spokesman said.
A Sydney Airport spokesperson told Daily Mail Australia at the time that cargo handlers would follow strict disease control protocols.
‘Cargo handlers operating out of the airport are following the strictest hygiene and infection control protocols in line with advice from health authorities,’ they said.
A Department of Home Affairs spokesman said: ‘International crew are permitted to transit through Australia but must remain in the port or airport, or self-isolate in accommodation for the duration of their transit.’
Daily Mail Australia has attempted to contact the Department of Health and Yuan for further comment.
One man dressed in protective gear and another two in hi-vis workwear were spotted near the plane’s entrance