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Coronavirus: The essential services that will keep running in New Zealand

Posted by Ben Whittacker-Cook on 24/03/2020 11:00:00 AM

We want to keep the amazing Icehouse network and wider Kiwi business community up-to-date as much as possible during these unprecedented times. Check out this excellent and very clear overview of what we can expect from our essential services over the next four weeks. 

This article first appeared on the Newshub website and is available here 

Coronavirus Business Information

While New Zealand goes into a lockdown to contain the spread of the COVID-19 coronavirus, several essential services will remain active to help New Zealanders. On Monday, the Government announced the move to a level 3 alert, to be followed by level 4 in 48 hours. 

It's now explained what this means on its COVID-19 website. 

"Essential businesses, and those that support them, will continue to provide the necessities of life for everyone in New Zealand," the government says. 

"This means food, medicine, healthcare, energy, fuel, waste-removal, internet and financial support will continue to be available." 

The government says while these businesses will continue working, they will put in place alternative ways of working to keep employees safe, including shift-based working, staggered meal breaks, flexible leave arrangements and physical distancing. All non-essential businesses must now close, as well as bars, restaurants, cafes, gyms, cinemas, pools, museums, libraries, and playgrounds. 

"We are setting up a call centre and free 0800 number to help answer questions about this. Our website will be updated as soon as this is set up," the government says. 

"More specific information for each sector will be published shortly." 

| List of essential businesses: 

Accommodation
Accommodation services for essential workers and people who need to be isolated/quarantined 

Border
Customs New Zealand, Immigration New Zealand and the Ministry for Primary Industries 

Building and construction
Building and construction related to essential services, critical infrastructure, or immediately needed to maintain human health and safety at home/work 

Courts, tribunals and the justice system
Courts of New Zealand and tribunals
Critical Crown entities (eg Electoral Commission)  

Education
At level 3 only: Schools and educational facilities (e.g. ECE centres) 

Fast-moving consumer goods
Businesses involved in the supply, delivery, distribution and sale of food, beverage and other key consumer goods (but not takeaway shops) 

Financial services 
Banks, insurers and other financial institutions 

Health
Hospitals, primary care clinics, pharmacies, medical laboratories, care facilities
Ambulance services
Mortuary services
New Zealand Blood Service donations 

Local and national government
Any entity involved in COVID-19 response or that has civil defence/emergency management functions
Key public services 

Primary industries, including food and beverage production and processing 
Packaging, production and processing of food and beverage products
Food safety and verification, inspection or associated laboratory services, food safety and biosecurity functions
Veterinary and animal health/welfare services 

Public safety and national security
Emergency services
Security and intelligence services
Justice system
Public safety and national security roles 

Science
Any entity (including research organisations) involved in COVID-19 response, hazard monitoring, resilience, diagnostics for essential services  

Social services 
Welfare and social services, including NGOs, which meet immediate needs (further guidance will be provided) 

Transport and logistics 
Transport services 
New Zealand Post and courier services
Any small passenger service vehicle driver - including taxis and ride-share services 

Utilities and communications, including supply chains
Electricity, gas, water, waste, fuel, telecommunication services, internet providers and media 


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Topics: News & Events, Leadership, Technology & Digital, Business Strategy & Planning, Brand & Marketing, Coronavirus