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ITALY

PMI temporarily suspends operations

24 Mar 2020. Philip Morris International will pause operations at Philip Morris Manufacturing and Technology Bologna, according to a company press release.

As of March 23, the factory in Italy will suspend all operations for a minimum of one week, to support the Italian government’s efforts to limit the spread of COVID-19. PMI will continue to closely monitor the situation, with an aim to restart operations as soon as possible, subject to government requirements.

According to the press release, there are sufficient inventory reserves across all markets for over two months of heated tobacco units, over three months of tobacco heating devices and over one and a half months of cigarettes, based on average sales trends recorded prior to the COVID-19 pandemic.

PMI has already implemented measures to protect its employees, in both manufacturing facilities and offices around the world. This includes asking those able to work from home, limiting business travel, cancelling large in-person gatherings and events and encouraging social distancing.

Jacek Olczak, PMI Chief Operating Officer, said of the Bologna suspension, “In this unprecedented global situation, our primary concern remains the health and safety of our colleagues, their families, and the communities in which we operate. We have therefore decided to temporarily suspend operations at our facility near Bologna. We are committed to doing our part and have taken a number of steps over the last two months to protect our people and ensure continuity of supply to our customers and consumers.”