Indian firms begin to restart operations post-lockdown

As per a report by the Economic Times, several public listed companies are gradually making efforts to restart operations, having received permission from relevant authorities

April 17, 2020

The companies are taking all necessary precautions - including deep cleaning plants, limiting the number of employees at the workplace, and enforcing social distancing

The companies span a range of industries, such as adhesives, chemicals, pharmaceuticals, food processing, dry cells, carbon steel pipe makers; and intermediate oils

India is under lockdown till May 3, however, certain mainstream business activities will be allowed to resume on April 20 in areas which are not COVID-19 hotspots

The government is taking measures to ensure that businesses do not suffer long-term - such as the DGFT helpdesk and the Invest India Business Immunity Platform

As per a report by the Economic Times, several companies are gradually making efforts to restart operations, having received permission from relevant authorities. They are taking all precautions to ensure a safe environment – including deep cleaning of plants, limiting the workforce, and enforcing social distancing. The rebuilding of the supply chain by the reopening of these 8 publicly listed companies will go a long way in bolstering the post-COVID-19 economy.

The companies span a range of industries, from adhesives (Pidilite Industries), chemicals and pharmaceuticals (Navin Fluorine and Hikal), food (Prataap Snacks), dry cells (Eveready Industries), carbon steel pipe makers (Man Industries); and intermediate oils (Yasho Industries). The stocks of these companies gained 1-10 per cent in the BSE after the announcement.

To prevent the spread of the novel coronavirus, India has been under lockdown since March 25, which will go on till at least May 3. However, certain mainstream business activities will be allowed to resume on April 20 in areas which are not COVID-19 hotspots, provided they take adequate safety measures. The above-mentioned companies will be resuming business with only 40-50% of employees, and ensuring extended lunch breaks, among other things, as precautions.  

The government is taking various measures to ensure that businesses do not suffer long-term consequences of the pandemic and subsequent lockdown. For instance, the Directorate General of Foreign Trade (DGFT) in the Department of Commerce, Ministry of Commerce and Industry, has launched a help desk to assist with any COVID-19 related export and import issue. The government has also announced a US$22.5 billion relief plan to help the most vulnerable sections of the society ride out the crisis. 

Meanwhile, the Invest India Business Immunity Platform has been launched to aid entrepreneurs and businesses during the slowdown brought forward by the crisis. Invest India has also announced a tie-up with the Small Industries Development Bank of India (SIDBI) for responding and resolving queries for MSMEs. Within 48 hours of its launch, the platform recorded over 30,000 visitors from across 40 countries.