WUHAN VIRUS/Supply of surgical masks to return to normal soon: convenience stores

01/29/2020 05:28 PM
CNA photo
CNA photo

Taipei, Jan. 29 (CNA) Convenience store chains across Taiwan assured the public Wednesday that the domestic supply of surgical face masks will become more stable once businesses return to normal on Thursday, following the end of the Lunar New Year holiday.

To meet the surge in demand, the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) announced that a daily supply of 6 million face masks will be made available through the country's convenience stores for three days beginning Tuesday.

According to the CDC, each person will only be allowed to purchase no more than three masks at a time per store.

Despite this measure, many convenience stores on Wednesday reported they were running out of face masks rapidly.

FamilyMart, one of the major chains in Taiwan, said the number of face masks being made available is insufficient considering it has 3,500 stores nationwide.

The company, along with leading chain operator 7-Eleven, said they will discuss with manufacturers the possibility of boosting supply as soon as businesses return to work Thursday.

Meanwhile, Hi-Life chain said some of its stores in busy shopping areas have also reported face masks selling out quickly, but added that supply will return to normal after the holiday break.

On Wednesday, Premier Su Tseng-chang (蘇貞昌) said the government will release 23 million surgical face masks onto the market in the coming days to guarantee domestic supply.

(By Pan Tzu-yu and Ko Lin)

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