Bangladesh and India Announce Country Wide Lockdowns

Bangladesh, the world’s 2nd leading garment manufacturer, imposed a total lockdown until April 14, 2020.  Mass market restrictions and closures have been enforced, including Customs, airports/airlines, ports/shipping lines, ICDs, manufacturers and business offices.  Water, rail, and air travel has been suspended and public transport on roads is banned.  Trucks, covered vans and vehicles carrying medicine, fuel and perishable items are not affected by the lockdown.  The Bangladesh Railway Authority has also suspended all local, commuter and mail train services across the country until further notice.

India is under complete lockdown until April 14, 2020.  All factories are closed.  Physical movement is not allowed and a curfew has been imposed. The lockdown has paralyzed virtually all commerce in the country.  Air Freight:  Most airlines have cancelled even their freighter operations due to no loads, and there is absolutely no cargo movement.  Ocean Freight:  While India’s federal government has issued an order declaring the transportation of goods by water – including loading and unloading – an essential service, it has also permitted port authorities to declare force majeure.  As port workers are restricted from venturing out of their homes, close to half a dozen ports including Krishnapatnam, Dhamra, Mundra, Tuna, Gopalpur, Karaikal and Gangavaram have declared force majeure, and are currently turning away vessels.   The government has issued a 14-day quarantine for shipping vessels arriving from any port in China or from any COVID-19 infected country.  Vessels arriving after 14 days of departure from a COVID-19 infected country are not required to comply with the additional precautionary measures.   Domestic Trucking: There is no movement of commercial vehicles. Despite the government’s assurances, thousands of trucks carrying food and cooking gas, among other goods and commodities, are reportedly stuck at sealed-off state borders. Customs:  Customs are available at the larger ports, but with minimal staff.