Hangcha Group in Zhejiang, China
In contrast to last year's crippling closures, manufacturers in China are back at work after the New Year holiday closures.
reports that manufacturing is back in full swing "in sharp contrast to the usual happenings as factories traditionally shut down for a couple of weeks after the Chinese Spring Festival holiday".
The report notes that Chinese authorities "encouraged people to stay put over the holidays" to prevent the sporadic resurgence of COVID-19.
It cites a survey which found 60% of the 200 largest manufacturing enterprises in one region were even operational during the holiday.
Major forklift manufacturers are among those already back in full production, with spokeswoman Kelly Xu confirming that Zhejiang Hangcha reopened after a week-long holiday closure.
She says national and local policies and the effective end of the pandemic ensured that workers reported for duty and operations are "back to normal".
Similarly, manufacturing is under way at UN Forklift, thanks to government support for workers who didn't go back to their home towns and who spent the holiday in Zhejiang.
Company representative Carl Wang tells Forkliftaction News
it's business as usual. "Everything is back to normal, even better now," he says, adding that the company has too many orders, with the backlog stretching to April or even to May.
Hangcha is also optimistic about business conditions. "In 2020, China's pandemic prevention and control were timely and effective, and Hangcha Group took the lead in resuming work and production at the beginning of 2020. In the past year, not only our production has been restored, but also the sales volume has made a major breakthrough. The sales volume has exceeded 200,000 units, an increase of nearly 50% over the same period last year, and the sales amount has exceeded RMB10 billion (USD1.5 billion)," says Xu.
Xu believes the progress of vaccinations and the strength of the Chinese economy bode well for export growth in 2021: "So, in the coming year, the overall trend is positive, and we believe that our export growth will increase steadily."
Wang is also upbeat: "Because of the Chinese government's great effort to control the pandemic very well, I (predict) more orders will come to China."
Meanwhile, China's official manufacturing Purchasing Managers Index (PMI) registered its 11th consecutive expansion in January, indicating vibrancy in China's factories which have been churning out goods that are needed by the world.