Supplier Nike and Adidas suspend production at its Vietnamese factory due to Covid

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Taiwan-based Pou Chen Corp, which makes shoes for companies including Nike and Adidas, suspended operations at its Ho Chi Minh City factory on Wednesday as Covid-19 curbs hit factories in the central business district of the country.

Vietnam’s health ministry said in a statement that production at Pou Chen’s Pouyuen Vietnam factory will be suspended for 10 days.

State media said 49 infections had been detected at the factory in Ho Chi Minh City, which is at the epicenter of the country’s worst coronavirus outbreak.

The company did not immediately respond to an email seeking comment.

Shares of Pou Chen, the world’s largest maker of branded sports and leisure shoes, closed 1.3% on Wednesday.

After successfully containing the disease for much of the pandemic, Vietnam has been dealing with a more tenacious outbreak since late April.

Record infections and strict travel restrictions have left factories operating below capacity in northern provinces where suppliers to Apple, Samsung Electronics and other global tech companies are located, sources said.

Pouyuen Vietnam, the city’s largest employer with 56,000 workers, was unable to get its workers to sleep at the site as required by authorities to allow the business to remain open, said announced Wednesday the Ministry of Health.

Last year, Pouyuen Vietnam was ordered to suspend production for two days after breaking local social distancing rules.

Earlier this week, state media said authorities had also ordered 29 companies in the Tan Thuan Export Processing Zone, an industrial park, to suspend production due to the outbreak.

In the nearby Saigon Hi-Tech Park, home to international companies, more than 700 infections have been detected in recent days and authorities have ordered companies to shut down units with infected workers, state media reported.

Despite the latest outbreak, Vietnam has had far fewer cases than many other countries with 36,605 total infections and 130 deaths.

By Sayantani Ghosh; Editors: Ed Davies and David Clarke

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