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Matson Says Shipping Supply Chain Uninterrupted By COVID-19

Berett Wilber
The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers says funding for the dredging project could become available as soon as the end of the year.

The company that supplies Unalaska with a weekly vessel service wants to reassure Unalaska residents that there will be no interruption in its supply chains. 

Matson has not missed a shipment since the start of the coronavirus pandemic. 

The shipping company has a unique view of the effect of COVID-19 on the global economy. According to Bal Dreyfus, Matson's senior vice president, Alaska, there's been a not-so-surprising increase in certain orders.  


"There's a lot more demand for laptops," said Dreyfus. "People are working from home."

Dreyfus also reported a drop in rental car shipments to Alaska, which may reflect an expected drop in tourism throughout the state. 

Matson has also been donating to local nonprofits. Last year, the company donated $1.2 million to nonprofits and charities throughout Alaska. This year, the company's giving strategy is a little different because of the global pandemic.


"It was very obvious that the world is changing," said Dreyfus. "We know there's going to be a food issue. We need to put our Matson giving on pause so we're not just kind of following momentum, and decide strategically what the right way to allocate our funding is."

So far, the company has donated $500,000 to food banks throughout its service area. It also donated $10,000 to Unalaskans Against Sexual Assault and Family Violence (USAFV). 

Caroline reported for KUCB in 2020.
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