The world’s second-largest economy partially shut down a few weeks ago as a viral outbreak affected thousands of people. The COVID-19 virus has to date infected more than 227,505 people worldwide, with China accounting for 35.55% of the cases. Strict quarantine measures have been designed to stop the spread of the new Coronavirus, which has prevented nearly 300 million migrant workers from returning to their jobs, shutting down one of the largest economies in the world for nearly three weeks and paralysing global supply chains.
Many of the factories that have re-opened after the outbreak are operating well below capacity and supply lines have been greatly severed. Quarantines, blocked roads and stringent checkpoints are preventing millions of people from returning to normality. With factories in short supply of a workforce, production is subsequently limited. Global shipping has also been massively affected, with shipping lines cancelling sailings from many Chinese ports, to drive up demand and mitigate revenue loss.
As new cases of coronavirus infection slow in China, the country is gradually getting back to work. However, China’s economic output as the world’s largest exporter, will be affected for months to come.
The coronavirus has been a huge wake-up call for supply chain & risk managers, forcing them to assemble crisis teams to deal with product shortages, lack of demand, and lengthy delays. China is making great efforts to maintain the balance of protecting the safety of their population, whilst getting people back to work and vital industries back on track as soon as possible.
Those keeping a keen eye on our site will have noticed a ‘low stock’ sticker on many of our products. While our PLA stocks have been affected by the global surge for sustainable packaging, impacting availability, we have also been directly affected by the Covid-19 outbreak in terms of shipping delays. Thankfully our manufacturing facilities continue to function, not all being based in China, but we will continue to be at risk of stock delays due to the impact of the Coronavirus on the entire supply chain – from production, to transport, port congestion, container availability, shipping times and availability of container bookings, right down to local port congestion and associated delays.
We will update items as and when needed, but any queries can be directed to lauren (at) ecopack (dot) co (dot) za.