Removing obstacles in business and production to protect people’s livelihoods

Monday, 2021-08-16 11:31:06
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It is necessary to consider enterprises as a force in the common battle against COVID-19.
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NDO - Sixteen trade associations have signed a proposal that the Government urgently take action to remove difficulties in the production and circulation of goods amid the imposition of social distancing measures in many localities to prevent the spread of COVID-19.

The proposal focuses on three major difficulties that enterprises are facing. Firstly, the model of “three on-site”, namely “on-site production, on-site living and eating, and on-site breaks”, is not having its intended effect due to the prolonged implementation time. Secondly, the transportation of goods for production and export is being disrupted as regulations are being implemented inconsistently between provinces and cities. And thirdly, a unified roadmap for business re-opening is urgently needed to avoid the current passive situation.

According to trade associations, the nationwide production and supply chains are facing the risk of disruptions as many factories with large numbers of workers in southern provinces are unable to follow the models of “three on-site” and “one route, two destinations”, referring to the route between the factory and workers’ residences.

Enterprises are already struggling with their production and now even the circulation of input materials and finished goods is also not allowed as many localities are blocking trucks and require drivers to have negative coronavirus tests.

Public health is foremost. Therefore, the Government still gives the top priority to fighting the pandemic despite pursuing the dual goal since economic targets cannot be realised without the pandemic being put under control.

But due to the danger of the Delta variant, some localities seem to focus only on pandemic prevention and are sacrificing economic development when introducing strict policies which are causing much difficulty for enterprises.

Economists have warned that fighting against the pandemic is the most important task at present, but the battle will continue for a long time and if flexible measures to maintain production and business are not implemented, droves of enterprises will be sent into bankruptcy, seriously harming economic development. This would result in depriving many people of their livelihoods and incomes.

As such, it is time to review the role of enterprises in the battle against COVID-19. It is necessary to consider enterprises as a force in pandemic prevention effort and grant them the autonomy of production so long as they pledge to take responsibility for ensuring safety at their production facilities and in the community in line with the requirements as set down by the functional authorities.

Only when production is protected can people’s livelihoods be secured in the long run.