So many sick and dead. So many unemployed and bankruptcies – that is the brutal picture. But, from the looks of it, that is exactly what is in store for us now. All over the world.
We are in constant contact with our colleagues in other countries, as well as with our business friends, partners and customers. What is happening there is absolutely catastrophic. Our social security systems in Germany help to avoid a bad end, in terms of both public health and the economy. The strength of the economy and the willingness of all social forces to display solidarity, coupled with state aid programs, will prevent a complete disaster in this country. But if we only look over the Brenner Pass, we see apocalyptic conditions. Many an already weakened part of the country has now been devastated.
No doubt about it: The various measures aimed at protecting public health are by their very nature damaging to the economy. This is the price we all have to pay for our physical integrity. Now everything must be done to ensure that this development remains manageable. Otherwise, we will be running at full tilt into an unprecedented recession, into a world economic crisis with all its ugly side effects. Of these, short-time work is the most harmless phenomenon. Company bankruptcies, private insolvencies and a wave of layoffs will not fail to appear.
WE are fighting around the clock for the continued existence of our company with almost 1,000 jobs and tens of thousands more jobs at our customers and partners in Germany and in 150 countries around the world. The virus broke out in China at the end of December and Wuhan was already quarantined at the end of January. Our people in China had already been hit hard weeks and months ago. A few weeks ago, Italy followed and now it appears that the rest of the world will follow. Plant closures by order of authorities, quarantine, curfew, fear and worry.
But people need security. Fear and worry are hard to live with, let alone accomplish great things. That’s why I promised you that you would not have to suffer financial losses. No one is to be dismissed! To achieve this goal, we must fight together. The best way to do this is to keep our operations going as long as possible. Even the smallest sales and orders are helpful to avert a shutdown. As long as we can still produce goods and bring them to our customers, we will not need to wind down the company.
The virus and the resulting lack of income from tourism or exports are ruining enterprises and livelihoods around the globe. We can contribute a little bit to ensure that at least our partners in the other countries do not go under completely. And we are doing so. Our colleagues in the Export department are doing everything humanly possible to bring goods – the basis for the activities of our customers – to our partners. And peak performance is also being achieved in our factories and in the Shipping department.
For this I thank you with all my heart! Take care of yourself and avoid any possibility of infection to make sure that you stay healthy! The worldwide LIQUI MOLY family needs you now more than ever!