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Coronavirus – a major impact to the world

Swiss WorldCargo continues to support supply chains

Over the past several weeks, we have all witnessed how a new kind of Coronavirus spread from China across the world and caused an unprecedented impact on our safety, economies and public life. After many countries closed their borders and implemented lockdowns, business life – for the most part – also came to a halt. As a consequence, global supply chains are now facing a serious threat, and it is more important than ever to maintain the supply of critical goods around the world. Swiss WorldCargo is proud to play a vital role in supporting this flow of goods throughout global supply chains.

The spread of the Coronavirus
In early January, the news first appeared that a new kind of virus was spreading in the Wuhan province, China. What seemed to be a local problem initially quickly developed into a global crisis. The new “Corona” virus – causing a serious respiration disease called “Covid-19 ” – quickly spread from China to Europe and onwards to the United States. Day by day, the impact became more severe, not only on different countries’ health systems, but also the global economy. To contain the Corona virus, most countries started to implement travel restrictions at first, followed by more drastic measures such as closing their respective border. Right now, the world is more or less in lockdown: public life came to a halt, people are either advised to stay home and most non-essential business have had to close. By implementing these measures, affected countries are trying to “flatten the curve”, that is, avoid a peak of Corona cases that could break down the health system.

The impact on Swiss WorldCargo
While these measures are surely necessary to contain the spread of the virus, they pose a massive impact on the economy: with shops closed, movement restricted and borders shut down, business and commerce has also mostly stopped. Of course, transport and logistic industries – that rely on the free flow of people and goods – are some of the most affected industries. SWISS, and consequently Swiss WorldCargo, have had to gradually reduce their networks in the past weeks. Yet, SWISS and Swiss WorldCargo stand by their promise to connect Switzerland to the world. It is now more important than ever that critical supply chains are maintained, and this is especially true for medical equipment and life saving goods.

Continue to connect
To live up to that promise, Swiss WorldCargo developed a new product in a very short time and with a great team effort: SWISS Belly Charter. Since travel bans and closed borders do apply to passengers but not to cargo, SWISS and Swiss WorldCargo now offer “Cargo only” flights with the empty passenger aircraft. The new offer comes in two options: either as a full charter flight or as a co-load, where space is sold as usual. The first of those charter flights arrived last week from Hong Kong in Zurich.

SWISS Belly Charter flights in Hong Kong

Since then, Swiss WorldCargo has ramped up its charter flights and is now offering flights to Beijing and Shanghai, among others. Subsequently, Swiss WorldCargo is offering additional space by filling up the empty cabin with Cargo. The first of those flights arrived this week in Zurich.

Cabin Load A340
Cabin Load A340
SWISS Belly Charter flight

With its new offer, Swiss WorldCargo is contributing to ease the economic impact of Corona virus by maintaining global supply chains and thereby supporting companies that rely on imports and exports. In fact, there are considerable cargo backlogs due the first moments of shock during the outbreak of the crisis and the reduced global network. It is now important that the flow of freight can start again to supply critical supplies around the globe.

In maintaining the connection from Switzerland to the world, Swiss WorldCargo is also directly contributing to the mitigation of the crisis and its impact on the health care system. SWISS and Swiss WorldCargo are especially proud to work together with Swiss authorities and institutions to import vital medical equipment to fight Coronavirus. The first of these flights came from Hong Kong last weekend and brought medical supplies to Switzerland. Likewise, much needed medicinal and vital goods are shipped from major pharmaceutical companies in Switzerland throughout the world.

In the coming weeks, Swiss WorldCargo is looking to carry over 35 million medical supplies for Swiss healthcare institutions which will ultimately reach diverse Swiss hospitals and clinics.

With a great team effort, SWISS and Swiss WorldCargo are continuing to support global supply chain and trying to help fight Coronovirus. The teams do their best to deliver the quality and the reliability SWISS and Swiss WorldCargo is known for. Only together, we can overcome this crisis and mitigate the impact on the world.

More information on SWISS Belly Charter can be found on our website.