The Impact of nCoV-2019 on International Mail
The emergence of the new coronavirus, nCoV-2019, has certainly affected every industry in the world; however, to an industry as global as international mail, the impact has been profound.
Mail bound for China, Hong Kong and Macau is facing delays due to mail processing operations in those locations being affected by government efforts to curb the virus, as well as many worldwide flights being cancelled to those regions.
As far as mail coming out of those regions, the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said the new strain of coronavirus is unlikely to spread via packages or products shipping from China:
“In general, because of poor survivability of these coronaviruses on surfaces, there is likely very low risk of spread from products or packaging that are shipped over a period of days or weeks at ambient temperatures,” the agency said.
Coronaviruses are thought to mainly spread from person to person via respiratory droplets, researchers say. So far, the novel coronavirus seems to have spread only among people who were in close personal contact.
While there’s still a lot unknown about this particular coronavirus, experts have a sense of what to expect, based on experience with previous strains that have led to outbreaks of serious illness, such as SARS and MERS. They all agree that shipping conditions of most products are going to be not conducive to the virus remaining viable – hence not a real risk.