Supply chain, logistics & freight
Regulations and customs processes
There is no change to the regulatory settings for trade between New Zealand and the People's Republic of China.
No additional sanitary or phytosanitary requirements are required by the government on market access for primary sector products exports and imports due to novel coronavirus. MPI has received confirmation from food safety, customs, and animal and plant quarantine officials stating that there are no changes to their customs and import clearance procedures.
At the same time, China Customs has announced 10 measures to support foreign exporters to get back to normal business operations quicker. These include simplifying registration and filing procedures and speeding up the time taken for inspection of imported raw materials and equipment needed in China. Streamlined procedures for importing food and agricultural products were included in the package. More information can be found here (Chinese language).
A leading New Zealand freight forwarder has advised there are no quarantine requirements on imports from China to New Zealand.
Freight and logistics
Freight companies are reporting that business in China is continuing to gain momentum towards more normalised levels of commercial activity.
Transport of cargo around China is operating without interruption, including inter-city movements, with only some provinces still requiring driver registration or screening.
There is still significant disruption to air freight as a result of increased border restrictions and the further reduction and cancellation of flights to and from China. Airlines still servicing the Chinese mainland have announced that express rates (increased or premium) may apply, as demand is expected to increase and capacity has significantly diminished.
Advice to exporters – logistics and freight
Proactive and daily communication with your logistic and insurance providers is essential as the situation is changing quickly.
Consider reducing shipping volumes, and stock held in China, until logistics operations return to normal. Although products may be able to clear customs, road transport out of the port and around China may be significantly disrupted.
Exporters should maintain close contact with their preferred freight forwarders and shipping lines, who will be providing regular updates. A number of major shipping, road and air freight companies are providing excellent snapshots and updates on the current logistics situation around the world.
Kuehne + Nagel: Logistics company Kuehne + Nagel is updating the status of sea, air and road logistics across Europe, China, wider Asia, North America, the Middle East and Africa, South Central America and China, updated regularly.
Levels of economic activity in China vary from province to province, as provincial-level governments balance the maintenance of public health with restarting production and manufacturing activity.
Guangdong province has provided stringent guidelines on how companies can return to work. This includes checking the travel and possible exposure history of workers, and stringent rules implementing additional hygiene measures.
Beijing and Shanghai also have additional hygiene measures, inspections, and limits on the number of people that can gather in one place. As large numbers of workers return to work, close monitoring is taking place to ensure additional measures are being implemented and adhered to.
Advice to exporters – supply chain
In the short term, business continuity remains the priority. Companies should continue to maintain close communication with supply chain and logistics partners to understand the specific situation within their businesses.
The pandemic has highlighted the importance of risk management and supply chain diversification. There is value in clearly identifying and considering the feasibility of sourcing from other suppliers to help mitigate risk of overreliance on a single source for vital components.