The vast majority of Europe’s wind turbine and component factories continue to operate, despite the lockdown in response to the outbreak of the Coronavirus, WindEurope said at the launch of its online information hub on Covid-19.

While 96% of all manufacturing sites in Europe are still operating, seven are currently closed, all of them in the hardest hit countries of Spain and Italy that also have the strictest lockdown regulations.

“COVID-19 shows the vital importance of a reliable electricity supply for our societies. And how critical it is that we continue doing operation and maintenance on existing wind farms and continue with construction and manufacturing,” WindEurope chief executive Giles Dickson said.

“The full European supply chain is affected by restrictions to the free movement of goods and workers and uncertainty on energy policy and the broader economy.”

The industry group’s information hub centralises developments on how Covid-19 is impacting the wind industry and how Governments are addressing the crisis.

Covid-19 is the respiratory disease caused by the novel Coronavirus Sars-CoV-2, which as of Friday morning has claimed 24,110 lives across the world, according to the data base of the Johns Hopkins University.

Hard hit Italy had so far has 8,215 deaths, and Spain another 4,365. In both countries severe lockdowns have been extended until at least mid-April.

According to WindEurope, in Spain the closed factories are: Siemens Gamesa Renewable Energy’s blade factory in Aoiz; two LM Wind Power blade factories in Castellon and Leon and shipbuilding company Astilleros Gondán production in Fugueras.

In Italy the closed factories are eTa’s blade factory in Fano; Celme’s tranformers production in Montebello Vicentino and Promau’s cylinders and cones production in Cesena.

The European wind supply chain also experienced some disruptions to the supply of components and materials from China in February. But Chinese component and material supply is now ramping back up again.