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Coronavirus forces Konica Minolta to suspend Chinese operations, restrict staff travel

Konica Minolta has suspended development, production and sales operations in China until at least February 9, 2020, as the coronavirus continues to spread beyond China. The outbreak has killed at least 360 people and infected 17,000 globally since being detected in the city of Wuhan in December.

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   (photo supplied)

The Japan-based print giant announced the move in a statement tiled Effects of Coronavirus in China on Konica Minolta.

“The Konica Minolta Group operates in China in development and manufacturing for the global markets, while selling business technologies products and services and healthcare equipment, among others, within the Chinese market. 

“Though Konica Minolta has no development or production facilities in Wuhan, it has a sales and services branch for business technologies and measuring instruments there. Konica Minolta’s primary production facilities in China reside in Wuxi, Dongguan, and Dalian, all of which are away from Wuhan, with other manufacturing sites in Shanghai’s Songjiang District and Xiamen. Sales and services branches spread across the country.

“The company suspends its operations in development, production and sales in China until February 9, 2020, except the healthcare business in Dalian, Hong Kong and Xiamen, in accordance with guidance and instructions of the Chinese and local governments.”

Konica Minolta has also banned employees from traveling into Hubei Province, where Wuhan is located. Other travels to China and Hong Kong are also banned, unless ‘urgent and imperative.’ 

“Japanese and foreign employees who are stationed in China and now at home for the Lunar New Year holiday must stay there until the Chinese operations resume,” it said. “For Japanese and foreign employees who remain in China during the holiday, the company directed their family members to come home temporarily.”

The company announced additional assistance for employees in China.

“Supporting the local employees’ needs for health and safety, the company is working on providing masks and non-contact medical thermometer for the Group companies in China. Konica Minolta keeps a close eye on the outbreak’s development and update the notice if its responses are to go through a major change.”

Last week, the APPPexpo 2020 due to be held in Shanghai in March was postponed due to the developing coronavirus situation. Sign China's February LED show in Shenzen has also been postponed but the main September Sign China, Shanghai, is still scheduled to go ahead.