In 2018, President Xi Jinping visited Hunan province to check on environmental protection measures. Decades of industrial development had a bad influence on the water quality of the world’s third-longest river. The Yangtze River is the main source of drinking water for nearly 400 million people. To recover the water quality and nearby nature, more than 1600 companies from different industries with insufficient waste water treatment have been closed since 2018. Until end of 2020, all remaining companies located within 1 km distance to the river have to prepare an environmental report. However, there are still around 400.000 small companies located in that area. The “greening” of the industry is a tough battle for the Chinese government, as those 400.000 companies make up 46% of the total chemical industry in China. The main goal now is to relocate factories to chemical parks where environmental protective measures can be better controlled.
Despite the challenging period we are currently in with the Covid crisis, the weather is wonderful. And in most European countries people are still allowed to leave the house for exercising. Our employees use the late afternoons for a run, cycling trip or a walk through the forest. Since there is no vaccine or treatment for Covid-19 yet, maintaining a strong immune system increases your chances of developing only mild symptoms if you happed to contract the virus. So if your local regulations allow, we strongly recommend to exercise outside. It is not just good for your immune system, but also provides mental stability.
Such a crisis breaks routines. A forced slow down, a new way of working, the joy of an empty schedule, all this is a great opportunity to be more mindful and reflect where we are stuck in a rut, come up with new ideas and start powerful into the next chapter.
Currently there are barely any physical meetings being held in companies around the globe due to the corona virus. But how can you still work on projects in a team if you are forced to do home office?
The answer is modern software like Webex, Microsoft Teams or others. Nowadays you cannot just hold conference calls but even see your colleague or business partner on the screen. However, it still remains challenging to communicate effectively with people who work in another location.
The key to a successful video conference is having a host who leads through the call in a structured way. Before starting the conference, he should send out an agenda and announce the goal of the call. When starting the conference, like in a physical meeting everyone should introduce themselves in case they are not familiar. If technology allows, the host might share his screen to all participants and lead through the agenda or show important slides or figures during the conference. He should always keep the goal in mind and as when nearing the end of a call summarize what the group has accomplished, relate it to the goal and propose next steps.
You might receive an invitation for a video conference in the next weeks. And if it’s perfectly structured, everyone can join immediately, webcam and voice works without problems, we would call that “unusual”.
The governments of most countries around the world implemented lockdown policies to slowdown the spread of Covid-19. While some European countries like Italy and Spain are already struggling to keep their health system running, developing countries like India or many African countries are aware of their rather weak healthcare system and therefore start implementing protective measures at an early stage.
India, with just 500 confirmed cases so far, implemented travel, work and movement restrictions in all big cities across the country. Most of the factories, shops and even public transportation have been shut down until March 31 at least. If those policies are being continued in April, we expect huge supply shortages all around the world.
Although many European countries are already impacted heavily by the virus, the supply situation of feedstock is still okay for most industries. All main European ports are operating. With most Chinese suppliers working as usual again, the lead time of goods from Asia is currently up to 40 days (usually 30) due to delays at European ports of discharge. Onward trucking across European countries is possible but often subject to heavy delays at borders.
Petrex will keep monitoring and analysing the consequences for our suppliers and customers. Please keep in mind, public health is the basis for success and satisfaction!
Global players like Amazon, Nestle, L’Oreal and many other companies are trying to keep their employees healthy by banning business trips. While some companies still allow essential trips or domestic travels, other companies like Twitter go even further and ask their employees to work from home. With the increasing number of infections in Europe, our clients as well as our own team cancelled meetings and hesitate to plan future business trips.
While companies from different industries suffer from restrictions to fight the virus, the travel industry is especially affected. According to the Global Business Travel Association, business travelers account for around 26% of total travel spending (1.5 trillion USD). Ford Motor Co.’s CEO Jim Hackett asked their nearly 200.000 employees last week to meet with business partners only by phone or virtually.
Usually we feel that personal contact is the best way to do business. However, we see a chance in the current circumstances to arrange more video conferences instead of business trips in general. In case you are interested in arranging virtual meetings please contact our team directly.
While the Corona crisis in Europe starts to get worse, we still see positive developments in China. Every day it is getting easier to move products between provinces. Our local logistics partners expect further improvements in March. However, the whole Hubei province is still locked and cities like Wenzhou, Ningbo, Taizhou suffer tough restrictions.
The high number of new cases in Italy lead to lock downs of several cities. The European and US stock market reacted immediately. Although experts corrected the mortality rate of Covid19 from ~2% to ~0.5% we still feel that Europe is very much concerned about further outbreaks. There is also negative development in other Asian countries such as Korea where the number of new cases went up a lot recently, especially in Seoul.
We suggest that international companies increase their safety stock now to reduce supply chain risks. However, we also see sales of customers going down due to purchasing power loss at consumer side which relates to higher risks of keeping more feedstock for production. That makes the whole situation very complex. It is important to communicate in all directions of the supply chain to make reasonable decisions.
Dear business partner,
2020 is the year of the rat according to the lunar calendar.
The rat is the first of the zodiac animals. It represents the beginning and is seen as a sign of wealth and surplus.
Below we would like to share the dates of public holidays in China this year:
International New Year: Jan 1st
Chinese New Year: Jan 24th – 30th
Qing Ming Festival: Apr 4th
Labor Day: May 1st
Dragon Boat Festival: Jun 25th
Mid Autumn Festival: Sep 27th
National Day: Oct 1st – 7th
Petrex is a colourful mix of German, Dutch and Chinese people. Working in different locations and time zones, speaking different languages but following one mission:
Increasing our Performance.
2019 has been a very successful year for the Petrex Group. With new members in our team, we offer a more sophisticated service and will strengthen our position in the market.
We put our customers at the heart of everything we do. We promise …
As a distributor for chemicals and pharmaceuticals we have to adapt to ever changing market environments. Changes are not limited to new regulations and growing compliance demand, but also the political situation between the countries we operate in. As our core business is moving goods between Asia, Europe and USA, we are in daily exchange with our clients and producers. We inform about new and upcoming regulations and discuss about how our business might be affected by political decisions. We can feel how the ongoing China – US Trade War and Brexit discussions have a major impact on the purchasing, production and investment strategy of our clients and manufacturers. Our approach is the following: Keeping our partners updated about current trends and movements in the market is as important as moving their goods.
CHINACOAT exhibition is dedicated to provide an international trading platform for suppliers and manufacturers of the coatings industry to connect with global trade visitors, particularly from China and Asia. The show is held annually and alternates its venue between the cities of Guangzhou and Shanghai, P. R. China. The scale of our 2018 Guangzhou edition reached its historic high, with a total of 35,540 trade visitors from 91 countries/regions, 1,291 exhibitors from 31 countries/regions and a gross exhibition area of over 78,500 square meters.
In 2019, CHINACOAT will return to Shanghai and is always a great platform where global industry meets. See you in Shanghai …