Local businesses concerned at delayed cargo ship stuck in Fiji with the crew in quarantine

There is still no news as to when the cargo boat Island Chief will be able to resume it’s voyage after its crew was taken into quarantine in Fiji when two crew members tested positive for COVID 19 last week.

Local businessman Mark Blumsky of Kendras Kollection is concerned the delays will greatly impact their sales this Christmas. He told BCN news that they are expecting their largest stock order ever on this boat so he is concerned that the longer the delays, the greater impact on their sales.

Blumsky says that Christmas is the time that businesses make their profit and any delays to their stock arrivals will impact on sales and will have flow on effects in two three months time when they need to buy new stock.

Amanda Pita Manager of Swansons Supermarket told BCN news that they are expecting 1 and half container of freezer goods, and 5 containers of dry goods.  

She says that they have enough stock to last a couple of weeks of delays if people avoid panic buying.

Meanwhile, Matsons the shipping company which owns the delayed cargo ship Island Chief told BCN news that they are still waiting on further information from the Fiji Ministry of Health and Medical Services and hope to be able to provide updated schedule information to our customers soon.

Keoni Wagner, Matson’s Director of Corporate Communications at their head office in Hawaii responded to questions from BCN news last night about the condition of the crew with COVID 19 being quarantined in Fiji.

Wagner says that all of the crewmembers are well.  None has been feeling ill and they are working with local officials to ensure that the two crew members in isolation at Navua Hospital are as comfortable as possible.

Mark Blumsky says that he feels for the businesses whose stock have used by dates and hope that the delay on the boat’s arrival will not be too long so everyone can move on and have a happy Christmas.

Amanda Pita told BCN news that while they are concerned with the impacts on cash flow to pay their suppliers but Swansons highest concern is the health and safety of the people of the island from this virus.

Keoni Wagner says that Matson’s top priority is the health and safety of its personnel and the communities they serve.

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