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NSW businesses asked to ‘retool’ to tackle hygiene product shortages

Maja Garaca Djurdjevic
Maja Garaca Djurdjevic
01 April 2020 1 minute readShare

The NSW Premier has called on local businesses to redeploy spare capacity to save lives and jobs by pivoting to producing medical equipment and hygiene products that are in short supply due to the coronavirus crisis.

Premier Gladys Berejiklian and Minister for Jobs, Investment, Tourism and Western Sydney Stuart Ayres have launched a portal for companies to offer to build parts or supply eight urgently needed items during the COVID-19 crisis.

Items in short supply include hand sanitisers, handwash soaps, gloves, cleaning products, protective clothing, masks, eyewear and paper products.


“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,” Ms Berejiklian said.

“We have the ability within NSW to meet our local demand and the government is moving to help manufacturers retool quickly to achieve this.”


Importantly, the Premier said, this will give some businesses the ability to keep people in jobs when they may not have been able to do so.

Local alcohol makers are already converting to produce items such as hand sanitisers, while other firms have switched to making face masks, providing much-needed equipment while keeping their business going.

With supply of personal protective equipment and disinfectant expected to be constrained for at least 12 months, NSW companies are being told that further opportunities exist.

Mr Ayres said the government will use information provided through the portal to connect the supply chain so more finished products can be provided where needed.



“This is an opportunity for businesses to not only diversify their supply but produce incredibly important products for our state in a time of need,” Mr Ayres said.

“We will work to find solutions to provide our hospitals and our people with the protection they need while keeping as many workers as possible in a job.”

Businesses are invited to register their interest through the portal at nsw.gov.au.

NSW businesses asked to ‘retool’ to tackle hygiene product shortages
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Maja Garaca Djurdjevic
Maja Garaca Djurdjevic

Maja Garaca Djurdjevic is the editor of My Business. 

Maja has a decade-long career in journalism across finance, business and politics. Now a well-versed reporter in the SME and accounting arena, prior to joining Momentum Media, Maja reported for several established news outlets in Southeast Europe, scrutinising key processes in post-conflict societies and enabling citizens to influence decision-making.

You can email Maja on [email protected] 

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