Maintaining all elements of the Supply Chain is so important

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In a statement to road haulage, logistics and freight forwarders representative organisations, including the Irish Road Haulage Association (IRHA), the Minister for Transport, Tourism & Sport, Shane Ross, thanked all those working in the transport network ensuring the delivery of essential goods to Ireland. The Minister paid tribute to all those involved in the on-going work in the transport supply chain after a Cabinet Committee meeting.

The Minister said: “I’d like to acknowledge the immense contribution of the people working to transport goods, foods and medications in a timely manner to all of us at home in Ireland. We know it is vital that our health service receives the medical equipment delivered by our transport workers in order to fight against this virus and care for all in need. I applaud and thank them for keeping the supply chain moving at this very difficult time.”

“Every element of the supply chain is a vital link in ensuring a continuous flow of goods. I know work has been on-going to ensure Dublin Port remains free from blockages and I would encourage retailers, where possible, to take delivery of their goods. If this is not possible, I ask that they seek alternative storage arrangements to ensure that the passage of essential products through the port is not impeded.”

The Minister noted that warehousing and support activities for transportation are deemed essential workers even if they are not dealing with essential goods. “We are providing additional guidance on this matter to all stakeholders in the supply chain.” (See annex below).

“In times of need, Irish people pull together and I know that everyone will do their part in ensuring the supply chain runs as smoothly as possible so critical needs can be met quickly.”

The Department has published a frequently asked questions document in relation to Maritime transport which is available at: https://www.gov.ie/pdf/?file=https://assets.gov.ie/72432/1f6f3b92977b44228eadd636b1067c80.pdf#page=1

Further information on the list of essential workers and guidance around their health is available at:

https://www.gov.ie/en/publication/dfeb8f-list-of-essential-service-providers-under-new-public-health-guidelin/

*Annex: COVID-19 – The importance of maintaining all links in supply chains

It is essential that the work of the supply chain continues to the greatest extent possible throughout the Covid-19 crisis. Where practical, all goods should continue to be distributed (not just food and medical supplies) to warehouses, businesses and distribution centres around the country. Likewise, all activities necessary for the continued provision of an essential service in the supply chain should continue. Every link must operate if the entire system is to function.

Those working in the supply chain who cannot work remotely, including but not limited to, cargo handlers, haulage drivers and warehouse staff should continue to go about their business to keep supply chains moving. Storage of containers at ports and airports is an impediment to the free flowing of goods. All warehouses and distribution centres, including those related to retail outlets which are temporarily closed, should continue to receive and store goods ordered. Guidance for both employers of essential workers and essential workers themselves can be found at www.gov.ie. Important health guidelines on COVID-19 can also be found at www.hse.ie

Travel related to the operation of logistics businesses or necessary travel by logistics workers to places of work are considered ‘essential travel’ in the context of current restrictions.

The COVID-19 crisis is presenting immediate and severe financial challenges for businesses. The following link details DBEI enterprise supports and guidance to help your business: https://dbei.gov.ie/en/What-We-Do/Supports-for-SMEs/COVID-19-supports/Government-supports-to-COVID-19-impacted-businesses.html

In addition, practical workplace guidance on how to manage business continuity from the NSAI is available at: https://www.nsai.ie/covid-19workplaceprotection/