Our Global Response
Staying committed and focusedAir Products continues to work hard to avoid any production shortages in our business due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Around the world Air Products continues to review and evaluate its entire robust supply chain, redundant back-up plans, and network of facilities to meet customer demands. This is a dynamic and fluid situation, which makes it difficult to predict its future impact or exact duration. We are controlling what we can, continually reviewing and updating our crisis and contingency plans, which may vary by product and plant location. We escalated our own company emergency response plans early, unlocking protective measures for our offices and production sites.
Proactive measures taken around the world
Air Products has and continues to take several protective measures to ensure the safety of our people and customers, while also maintaining business continuity. Some of these actions taken at locations around the globe include:
- Having our employees work from home if they are in a role that allows them to do so. All our offices and facilities remain open and operational, with only limited employees there who are business continuity critical and unable to do their job remotely.
- Restricting access to site visitors and holding virtual meetings instead of in-person meetings whenever possible.
- For authorized people who must enter one of our sites, additional health protocols have been applied including: 1) Temperature checks at certain locations for employees, contractors, tenants and visitors; 2) Refined work procedures to allow social distancing for specific personnel and their operations; 3) Implementing carefully considered personal protective equipment at certain locations.
- Reinforcing good hygiene practices amongst our workforce, and in parallel our sites have implemented increased cleaning and disinfecting frequency.
- Restricting business travel per the latest guidelines from countries around the world. Early on, Air Products made its own decision to restrict employee travel to "business-critical" travel only.
Safety and healthWe have maintained our operations and provided our dedicated workforce with the appropriate safety and health protocols, including social distancing, enhanced cleaning procedures, self-reporting, screening activities, and required PPE. For example, inside our manufacturing facilities, we continue to focus on ensuring employees who must do work within 6 feet of one another for more than 15 minutes at one time have added precautions and protection.
Reported product shortagesIn Europe there have been media reports of shortages of medical oxygen. Safety is something we take very seriously, along with ensuring customers do not experience interruptions to their gas supply – especially in areas of such importance as the supply of oxygen for medical care. Specifically, Air Products’ merchant gases business in the UK, which includes the production and delivery of medical oxygen, is operating at normal levels at this time. We are monitoring the situation, working with the UK government, and are in regular communication with our medical customers.
Ongoing collaboration between our company and customersOur teams are continuously monitoring the real-time supply-demand balance, considering evolving resource challenges and issues as they develop and may change. If you do need to order product, then please contact us in the usual way. This will help to ensure your requirement can be correctly assessed as part of our scheduling process.
Likewise, please inform us if there are any changes that may affect our ability to meet our contractual obligations, such as changes to your location access procedures or the ability to continue granting us access to your facilities.
We will continue to provide you with updates, changes, and mitigation activities as appropriate during this challenging time for all of us in order to keep you abreast of the current status or other actions we may need to take relating to this event.
Communicating regular updatesOur Chairman, President and CEO, leadership teams and health response teams have been sharing information regularly with employees about ongoing actions to maintain the health and safety of our colleagues, customers, suppliers, and communities.
Providing work practices and standards to support employees during a health pandemic (like COVID-19)Based on facts, information from health authorities, community transmission assessments, and our ability to continue to deliver essential products and services people need, our teams continue to make critical decisions about work arrangements for employees. Air Products has a global standard practice that details how we continue to pay employees in the event of a health pandemic like coronavirus. Additional regional practices are designed to address regulations and different health crisis circumstances across the world.
Offering 24x7 employee assistance programsWe continue to provide assistance programs and resources to support our employees and families.
Supporting relief effortsThe Air Products Foundation awarded a $100,000 grant, approximately 700,000 renminbi, to assist COVID-19 recovery efforts in China, on top of an earlier donation of 500,000 renminbi, approximately $70,000, made by Air Products China to the Red Cross in China to support the most urgent medical care needs.
Air Products Korea has donated KRW 100 million (equivalent to US $84,000) to the non-profit organization Community Chest of Korea to help fight against the outbreak.
Air Products Saudi Arabia has donated 50,000 SARS (equivalent to approximately U.S. $13,000) to the Charity Association for Orphans Care – BENAA – Eastern Province for their continued work to help orphans and widows affected by COVID-19.
In addition, Air Products has continued to deliver needed medical liquid oxygen and helium to hospitals. Where appropriate, we are also working with government authorities to share our knowledge and expertise in the supply chain of medical gases.