The Impact Of Corona Virus, So Far
In the Coronavirus epidemic (a global health emergency declared by WHO) China, the logistics hub of the world has been the most affected amongst all its major competitors.
The virus started spreading from the city of Wuhan towards the end of 2019 and by the end of January, citywide quarantine and strict transport restrictions had been placed in various parts of China in an attempt to stop the spread of the virus.
China has some of the world’s biggest and newest seaports apart from having one of the biggest manufacturing industries in the world. But due to the roadblocks, quarantines, and factory closings, severe disruption is being caused to inbound and outbound air cargo shipments, trucking, and rail cargo services, as well as heavy port congestion for vessels along the Yangtze River.
The world’s biggest container line Maersk, has already stated that this global epidemic is likely to cause a hit in their earnings this year as there aren’t enough workers at the ports to move the containers around, not enough truck drivers to move the goods, and no one to receive them at the factories or warehouses. A lot of ships are also laying idle in Asia, as they had to cancel many loadings out of China.
This world health emergency crisis has greatly affected the Chinese manufacturing and export industry. According to Reuters, many fashion retailers have already started to switch to Turkish, Bangladeshi and Vietnamese firms with orders being worth up to $2 Billion.
At a time like this, supply chain managers across the world are racing against time to evaluate the impact of Coronavirus and how to deal with it. Although the long term consequence is yet to fully play out, companies are already working on contingency plans to deal with this global crisis. On a positive note, things are slowly improving as in terms of land transport, 45% of logistics parks in mainland china have reopened. But, the capacity still remains low. It is believed that although the Coronavirus epidemic might impact the global economy in 2020, it will eventually bounce back to its former state.