2020.03.03 08:00

After coronavirus fears, Lithuania sees shortage of hand sanitisers

Erika Alonderytė, BNS2020.03.03 08:00

The Lithuanian authorities will coordinate with businesses to help fill a market shortage of hand sanitzers caused by a surge in demand.

"We need to find out the formulas of those sanitizers and coordinate things with producers, because ethyl alcohol is only one of the ingredients," Health Minister Aurelijus Veryga told reporters on Monday.

Read more: No new coronavirus cases in Lithuania – health minister

"We'll do that as promptly as possible and expedite the processes as much as possible," he said, adding that more detailed information should be available on Tuesday.

According to the minister, healthcare and educational institutions alone need about 200 tons of hand sanitizer monthly and the overall demand in the country is several times as high.

There is no shortage of hand sanitizer in health facilities, but it is impossible to buy the product in stores, he said.

Romualda Stragienė, the director of Biok Laboratorija, a leading Lithuanian cosmetics manufacturer, said the market demand for hand sanitizer is huge and the company has been flooded with orders, but the issuance of production permits needs to be accelerated.

Algirdas Čiburys, the CEO of MV Group Production, Lithuania's largest spirits producer, said the company does not manufacture hand sanitizer, but it could adapt several production lines if needed.

Vilniaus Degtine CEO Rokas Mituzas also said that the distillery can produce as much sanitizer as needed.

Read more: Lithuania confirms first case of coronavirus, to deploy troops in airports

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