Calls for businesses to switch to manufacturing medical supplies

The NSW government has asked for help from businesses to boost production of medical supplies as shortages hit the state.

As the imported supplies the government had largely been reliant on dry up and cases of Covid-19 continue to rise in

NSW – the hardest hit state, Premier Gladys Berejiklian flagged shortages of critical medical equipment and hygiene supplies.

And has asked that businesses, especially those with existing relevant manufacturing capabilities, to consider switching gears to redeploy production lines and move into manufacturing the key lines to bolster local supplies.

Among the products flagged as being in short supply are hand sanitiser, hand-wash soap, gloves, cleaning products, protective clothing, masks, eyewear, paper products, packaging and selected raw materials.

And a portal has been established for businesses willing to step up and produce products or parts and to connect supply chains. It comes as the government cautioned Personal Protective Equipment and disinfectant could be in limited supply for at least 12 months.

“This is a call to arms for NSW manufacturers to look at ways to convert production lines into making the items we so desperately need. We have the ability within NSW to meet our local demand and the Government is moving to help manufacturers re-tool quickly to achieve this,” Ms Berejiklian said.

“Importantly, providing this opportunity to manufacturers will also allow some businesses to keep people in jobs when they may not have been able to do so.”

Some Australian businesses have already repurposed their production lines to hand sanitisers, including many breweries distilleries such as Sydney based Archie Rose, Tasmania’s Lark Distilling, and Melbourne’s Gospel Distillers.

Other businesses, such as South Australia’s packaging company Demtold have began producing face masks.

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