In the QAD Precision News Round-Up: 17 April 2020, US economy
could reopen before May; China’s GDP shrinks; FedEx adds 150 PPE
flights; UPS donates N95 masks; DHL helps Costa Rica relief efforts;
why 3PLs needs multi carrier shipping and more.
On Tuesday, President Donald Trump stated that he is close to
finishing a plan to end the coronavirus shutdown and reopen the US
economy. Mr Trump said that parts of the country are likely to be
ready to reopen before 1 May. Furthermore, the President said that he
would speak to governors about opening their states when it becomes
appropriate. However, he also noted that states could decide
individually when to reopen. For more information, please see Reuters.
In March, China’s economy contracted for the first time since current
records began nearly 30 years ago. The shrinkage is as a result of
the coronavirus pandemic, which put millions of people out of work as
well as shut down factories and shops. Gross domestic product (GDP)
declined by 6.8 percent in January to March year-on-year. This decline
was slightly larger than the 6.5 percent predicted by analysts.
Furthermore, this reversed the 6 percent increase in the fourth
quarter of 2019. This is the first time China has recorded a
contraction in GDP since records began in 1992. For more information,
please see Reuters.
Authorities in the UK have asked forwarders to watch out for
counterfeit personal protective equipment. The UK Border Force have
warned the industry that criminals are exploiting the coronavirus
pandemic and trying to infiltrate supply chains with counterfeit
medicines and PPE. This situation is not unique to the UK — many
countries are grappling with counterfeit challenges during the crisis.
In addition, the UK Border Force stated that it is vital for legal
items to get through unobstructed. You can read more on this story at
This week, Kentucky received a N95 mask windfall when UPS donated
10,000 respirator masks to hospitals across the state. The carrier
obtained enough of the masks to meet staff requirements. As a result,
UPS donated available masks to help protect healthcare providers in
Louisville and other hospitals across Kentucky. On Monday, UPS
delivered 10,000 masks to Kentucky’s Emergency Management Agency in
Frankfort. For more information on this donation, please click here.
For the month of April, FedEx Express is adding 150 fights to
transport personal protective equipment (PPE), medical supplies and
other critical items from Asia to the US. According to Bloomberg, the
carrier is planning to use previously grounded aircraft. Currently,
FedEx deploys seven to nine flights across the Pacific each day and
has increased domestic flights to carry packages for the US Postal
Service. You find more details on this at Supply
In more carrier news, Deutsche Post DHL Group (DPDHL) will provide
logistics support for coronavirus response efforts in Costa Rica. The
carrier’s Disaster Response Team (DRT) will work with the Costa Rica
National Emergency Commission (CNE). The response team will work with
CNE to set up a central supply warehouse. Volunteers will review
critical equipment and resources.They will also consult on security
matters, as well as manage donation inventories and purchases of
necessary items such as cleaning supplies, hygiene, PPE and consumer
goods plus more. For more details, please see Post
and Parcel Technology.
In March, UK retail sales fell to their lowest decline on record.
According to the BRC-KPMG monthly survey, year-on-year total sales
fell 4.3 percent. This is the worst decline ever recorded by the
survey. The Covid-19 global pandemic has had a significant impact on
the UK’s retail sector, with wild swings caused by the pandemic. In
early March, retail sales jumped 12 percent. However, as the lockdown
took hold, sales fell 27 percent. The impact was not felt equally
across all parts of the retail sector. Computers, board games, and
fitness equipment had strong sales, while demand for clothing sharply
declined. For further details on this news item, please see Retail Gazette.
E-commerce has revolutionized the way we shop. Everything and
anything, from groceries to gaming consoles can be bought online. In
2019, global e-commerce sales grew around 20 percent. Industry experts
forecast that online sales would grow around the same percentage this
year. However, the global Covid-19 pandemic is likely to impact that
growth. According to payments company, ACI Worldwide, online sales
surged 74 percent this March compared to the same month last year.
What we are buying online is also changing. Gardening tools and DIY
products skyrocketed in March — 163 and 136 percent respectively
compared to March 2019. Electronics and online games also saw large
increases. With millions of people effectively barred from leaving
their homes, many of us have purchased products to keep ourselves and
our families busy during this time. In this QAD Precision Report we
look at these changes and why multi carrier parcel shipping is more
important than ever before for 3PLs. To see the full report, please