Multiple shoemaking companies in Quanzhou and Putian in Fujian confirmed to the Global Times on Thursday that the logistics systems in both cities were delayed and even suspended as a result of the coronavirus resurgence, with Quanzhou the most affected.
A domestic sportswear brand, which asked to remain anonymous, told the Global Times that local shoemaking enterprises in Quanzhou have been affected significantly in daily production, as many shoe manufacturers are under closed-loop management, and logistics and delivery services are being restricted.
Fujian recorded 69 new confirmed cases on Wednesday, among which, Quanzhou and Putian reported 65 and three cases respectively. The province also reported 162 asymptomatic cases.
Quanzhou has taken strict epidemic containing measures. For example, express services are suspended for the regions placed under quarantine, according to the Quanzhou municipal Postal Administration. Delivery services have principally stopped receiving parcels from controlled areas but distribution services have remained normal.
A shoe factory manager surnamed Wang said that many delivery firms such as SF Express have suspended services in Quanzhou, but some services such as ZTO Express are still operating.
Aside from Quanzhou, the logistics system in Putian, another shoe-making hub in Fujian, has also been affected.
According to staffers at two Putian-based shoe factories, production, operation and dispatch have mostly remained normal. But one said that domestic shipments to some places that have Covid-19 outbreaks were returned.
Though a new fashion season has arrived, some Chinese sportswear brands have had to postpone the launch of new series due to the flare-up in Quanzhou.
Xtep decided to postpone the launch of its 160X3.0 running shoes as its factory and warehouse in Quanzhou halted production, the company said.
Fujian is a major shoemaking and export hub in China. In 2021, Fujian exported 2.49 billion pair of shoes, a year-on-year increase of 22.6 per cent, with a value of 79.77 billion yuan ($12.53 billion), an annual growth of 26.3 per cent, according to data from the Fuzhou Customs.
Local private enterprises have become more prominent in promoting trade, with the total exports of shoes hitting 59.1 billion yuan in 2021, up 31.2 per cent from the previous year. The US, EU and the Asean are major export markets.
China’s central government is implementing measures to ease the burdens of small, medium-sized and micro-sized (SMM) firms as well as foreign trade enterprises in order to stabilise the supply chain.
Shu Jueting, a spokesperson of China’s Ministry of Commerce, said on Thursday that the ministry will cooperate with responsible authorities to support SMM enterprises and foreign trade enterprises with more tax and fee cuts.