Toilet paper, illustration - Pixabay
In the midst of a coronavirus epidemic, Hong Kong no longer has toilet paper to sell. Locals have recently run out of all the supplies available in supermarkets after rumors of scarcity spread online.
Videos show long lines of customers waiting at the checkout, shopping carts overflowing with toilet paper. Panicked consumers also rushed over rice and pasta.
🧻 Toilet paper is sold out across Hong Kong.
Social media rumors have circulated that supplies from mainland China could stop because of the #CoronavirusOutbreak. More @business: https://t.co/rp1f8WM1rV #coronavirus # 新型 肺炎 pic.twitter.com/l2Kyfj0mtA
"There are sufficient stocks," says the government.
Harold Yip, founder of Mil Mill, a Hong Kong-based paper recycling company, said it has already been contacted over a hundred times by consumers concerned about the availability of toilet paper. According to the local chain RTHK, in a supermarket, stocks of rice and toilet paper, replenished overnight, were emptied this Thursday morning in half an hour.
Hong Kong residents are panic buying toilet paper #TPEoorhh https://t.co/00qCvF68PG pic.twitter.com/XQNH233FQW- The Pigeon Express - TPE (@PigeonExpress_) February 7, 2020
This Thursday, the Hong Kong government issued a statement to denounce false rumors circulating online, causing "purchases related to panic, and even chaos". He blamed people with "malicious intentions" for spreading "rumors as the city fights against the spread" of the coronavirus.
The semi-autonomous territory has closed almost all of its border posts with China in order to contain the expansion of the epidemic. However, freight transport is not affected. "There are sufficient stocks of basic products including rice and pasta," said the executive. “There is no need to worry. Hong Kong has so far identified 21 cases of coronavirus infection and one death from its territory.
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