More face masks to go on sale Friday: cosmetic chains

(CNA file photo)

TAIPEI (CNA) — Two major healthcare and cosmetic chains in Taiwan announced Thursday that more surgical face masks will be available for purchase at their stores nationwide from Friday.

Poya, which operates about 230 stores across the country, said sales will be restricted to one purchase per customer.

According to the company, the 1 million face masks it previously ordered from suppliers sold out in one day last week, as customers were free to buy as many as they wanted.

The next batch of masks will be available for both adults and children, selling in small packages of five or boxes of 50, but customers will only be allowed to buy either one box or three packages, Poya said.

The company did not disclose how many masks it has ordered.

COSMED, another major cosmetic chain, said it will start selling 1 million masks in NT$299 boxes of 50 on Friday.

As with last week, customers will only be allowed to buy one box per visit, it said.

COSMED, which has close to 400 stores in Taiwan, said more masks are being ordered for the next three weeks, with 2 million each to be made available on June 19, June 26 and July 3.

Earlier this year, amid the COVID-19 pandemic, Taiwan’s government requisitioned all surgical face masks manufactured in the country, and implemented a rationing program for the public, limiting each buyer to three masks per week and later to nine per fortnight.

In the months since rationing was introduced, daily production capacity has been ramped up from 1.88 million to around 20 million masks per day, which allowed the requisition order to be relaxed from June 1.

However, the rationing system remains in place, so members of the public still have access to masks if private outlets sell out.