87% of US businesses in China expect coronavirus to impact revenues
Companies are beginning to see the impact that the outbreak of the coronavirus in China is having on their businesses. Many firms are now starting to predict that it will negatively impact their revenues. In fact, according to a survey conducted by The American Chamber of Commerce in Shanghai, 87% of US businesses in China expect the coronavirus to impact their 2020 revenues – with 24% predicting a fall in revenues of 16% or more.
The results of the survey, which was conducted in the first week of February, indicate that disruption and concern about the impact that the coronavirus is having on supply chains is spreading quickly. This comes after a survey conducted by the Massachusetts Institute of Technology Center for Transportation and Logistics in the last week of January which reported that only a few respondents anticipated major disruption from the virus in the next quarter.
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Brexit to cause fresh problems for food supply chain
The British Retail Consortium (BRC) has warned that the fresh food supply chain could face huge problems when the Brexit transition period ends on December 31st, 2020. They stated that border checks could quickly cause delays at Channel ports for thousands of trucks including those which carry fresh food. The warning comes after UK cabinet minister, Michael Gove, said that post- Brexit border checks are “inevitable”.
The BRC also said that “massive upgrade[s]” were needed in order to ensure that border facilities can cope with the extra checks and that the UK Government needed to “move fast” to ensure the necessary infrastructure and staff are in place on time. This comes alongside a further warning from Andrew Opie, the BRC’s director of food and sustainability, that if the Government doesn’t make sure this is in place, “consumers in the UK will see significant disruption, particularly in the availability of fresh fruit and vegetables”.
While the full extent of checks at the border won’t be known until a trade deal is agreed upon, the government believes that if businesses take the prospect of border checks seriously, more will be prepared and thus resulting in less delays and disruptions.
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JD.com uses drones to ensure goods are delivered safely in China
Due to the Coronavirus outbreak many Chinese cities remain on lockdown to prevent the virus from spreading. As a result, many of the usual delivery modes are unavailable due to the need for human interaction. However, the Chinese e-commerce firm JD.com has found a solution – drones.
The company has become the first e-commerce firm to start delivering goods by drone after they were used to deliver goods including snacks, electronics and daily necessities to a village near the Baiyang lake in the Hebei Province. Not only is the company using drones in order to make deliveries in quarantined cities, they are also using self-driving vehicles – with such an autonomous vehicle delivering medical supplies to a hospital in Wuhan.
JD.com has said that it has further plans to employ drone deliveries in other affected cities in order to ensure timely and safe shipments during the Coronavirus outbreak.
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Have a great weekend!