Following the introduction level 4 restrictions in New Zealand, the country is now in lockdown. This comes as a huge blow to the New Zealand marine industry, with the New Zealand Ministry of Transport advising that recreational boating is no longer permitted.
“There is no escaping the immediate economic effects of Covid 19”, Said Peter Busfield Executive Director of NZ Marine, “but hopefully the swift action by the New Zealand Government and the people of New Zealand following orders in true military fashion, will see New Zealand as a stand-out country, that united and together stamped out this virus in New Zealand.”
NZ Marine is already feeling the effects of the global pandemic, after the Ministry for Transport outlined essential services relating to the maritime industry in New Zealand, covering tight restrictions on the movement of freight by ship, as a well as ferry services and port operations.
“What I found during the first week of New Zealand’s Level 4 lockdown was the initial shock and magnitude of what was happening,” explained Busfield.
“As an employer of passionate and dedicated people at the NZ Marine Industry Association headquarters in Westhaven, Auckland, representative of 500 marine industry companies nationwide, and as a husband, father and grandfather, I felt responsible for leading and assisting these people where I could.”
Busfeild remains optimistic however, believing the industry can’t afford to take a backwards step.
“What I found is that after the realisation, sadness, stress, some anger and exhaustion over what has happened I gained some optimism and renewed energy as soon as I started to map out possible plans for the future. Future plans for the maximising of opportunities for the New Zealand marine industry, NZ Marine Industry Association operations and my own family.
I am confident that with the skills, the can-do attitude and the determination of company owners, managers and staff teams in marine industry companies nationwide, that we in the New Zealand marine industry will achieve what we set out to do and will reach our new set goals.”
The New Zealand Government has announced a substantial fiscal and economic response to the COVID-19 pandemic, and a package has been established to support employees of businesses and the self-employed, comprising of targeted wage and leave grants.