Last updateMon, 06 Jul 2020 6pm

COVID-19 - Export of protection products from 3M distribution centre Jüchen

3M Exports under applicable export regulations

The multi-technology company 3M is one of the largest manufacturers of protective equipment in the world. Products for Germany and Europe are distributed from 3M's European distribution centre in Jüchen. Due to media reports, the impression has arisen that 3M exports respirators from Germany for its own benefit, thus making it difficult to supply these products locally. The opposite is the case: 3M, without its own respirator production in Germany, has imported and supplied an additional almost 20 million masks for the German health care system. In this way, 3M is making an important contribution to protecting medical personnel in particular from infection with the coronavirus.

On 19/20 March 2020, the Mönchengladbach customs authority carried out a standard check on a consignment of goods declared for export to Switzerland. In a media report shortly afterwards, it was reported that 3M had attempted to export medical protection products in circumvention of the current regulations. This does not correspond to the facts, which has since been confirmed by the customs authorities.

In fact, the inspection was a routine, so-called "foaming operation". The delivery concerned included 3M products for industrial use: in addition to abrasives and adhesive tapes, also occupational safety products.

No products were "seized" or "confiscated" by customs. This is also confirmed by the responsible customs authority in Mönchengladbach. The delivery was intended for export to Switzerland and was duly declared. A shipment to the USA was not planned at any time.

For 3M, compliance with national and international regulations and laws has the highest priority. The Mönchengladbach customs authority has confirmed that no unlawful actions were committed by 3M.

Orders and enquiries from governments, hospitals, care institutions and security authorities from all over Europe reach us daily. Although we do everything possible to meet the current demand, the demand for protection products far exceeds the production capacities of the manufacturers.

In this context, we would like to emphasize once again that we have not increased the prices for protective masks in the light of the current corona crisis. However, we also have no influence on the pricing of dealers.

Background: 3M response to the corona virus
Since the first outbreak of COVID-19, 3M has doubled its global production of N95 respirators to a maximum level of over 1.1 billion per year or nearly 100 million respirators per month. Much of this volume is used to support government emergency programs, primarily to protect healthcare workers. Other volumes are being provided with priority to industries that are also key to this pandemic, including energy, food and pharmaceutical companies.

3M is working with governments, medical agencies and customers around the world to get supplies to where they are most needed as quickly as possible. Many governments have now declared a state of emergency at local, regional and national levels. These measures, combined with the increasing number of confirmed COVID 19 cases, are resulting in a significant increase in demand for 3M products from healthcare customers and government agencies.



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