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Sri Lanka apparel firms divert production to masks and protective equipment

Sri Lanka’s apparel sector has turned factories to make mask and protective equipment for frontline workers who are fighting against COVID-19, though tight controls are making it difficult to keep factories running. At the moment the industry is making one million pieces of safety suites through JAAF for people who are working frontline of COVID-19 treatment. However, production halted after police asked some factories to close and workers were not allowed to report to work at others.

The fabric for mask production had been donated by Teejay Lanka, a local knitted fabric manufacture, while the HDPE polythene to produce coverall protective suites were donated by PolyPack, a Sri Lankan plastic products maker. In addition, a number of factories are working with the government to supply in a number of protective cover all garments made out of HDPE polythene, again being provided free of charge to the Government for use in state hospitals. The raw material for this project has been donated Polypack.

However, the industry is not looking at exporting at the moment due to workforce shortages meanwhile the government tightens its Island wide curfew.