Employees work on the production line of high-precision sheet aluminium at a factory of Shandong Weiqiao Pioneering Group Company Limited on November 23, 2019 in Zouping, Shandong Province of China.
Tang Ke | VCG via Getty Images
Widespread disruption brought on by the coronavirus outbreak has hammered global supply chains and spurred Chinese companies to declare “force majeure” — a provision that exempts them from contractual obligations. But experts warn there’s a high chance such a move may not work.
A force majeure event occurs when unforeseeable circumstances, such as natural catastrophes, prevent one party from fulfilling its contractual duties, absolving them from penalties.
Since late January, the Chinese government has implemented city-wide lockdowns and large-scale quarantines that effectively curbed the movements of millions in China as the country seeks to contain the COVID-19 virus. Those restrictions have hurt businesses as operations of factories and facilities came…