A Chinese company in Sydney has sent an explosive email to staff telling them to stockpile medical supplies amid the coronavirus pandemic.

Workers from Chinese real estate developer Poly Developments and Holdings were told to urgently find masks anywhere they could and were strongly encouraged to buy from pharmacies across Sydney.

It comes after Australian healthcare workers have reported shortages of important personal protective equipment (PPE) in hospitals across the country as they deal with coronavirus.

"If you have time please drop by your local pharmacy to check if there are any 3MN95 or 8210 masks for sale," the email obtained by 60 Minutes reads.


The staff assured the company that they were searching the city from Eastwood to Hornsby, Penrith and Mona Vale for masks, an email reply revealed.

Poly Developments and Holdings are not the only company to do such a thing.

A whistleblower told 60 Minutes he saw tonnes of gloves, masks, gowns, sanitiser and other vital medical supplies being packaged in his Sydney office to be shipped out of Australia to China.

Covid19.govt.nz: The Government's official Covid-19 advisory website

The anonymous witness worked at Greenland Group, another Chinese-owned property development company in Sydney.

The anonymous source told 60 Minutes that he saw boxes of vital medical equipment being prepared to be sent to China in January and February this year.

"Meeting rooms, lunch rooms and the boardroom, starting to be filled with different types of items getting unpackaged and repackaged and labelled," he said.

"It definitely rose my suspicion. The concern to me is if all these medical items leave the country, what's left for us?"


The company's employees were asked to procure different medical items from shops and pharmacies, according to the witness.

Not only that, but full-time employees were also made to pack and repackage items that were then sent back to China.

"It is very unsettling that essential equipment can just leave our borders in massive commercial quantities," he said.

In just two months, China stockpiled around 2.4 billion pieces of protective equipment, including more than two billion masks.

On February 24, another Sydney-based Chinese company, Risland, sent 90 tonnes of medical protection equipment to China.

The Australian Government last week banned the non-commercial export of PPE such as face masks, hand sanitiser, gloves and gowns.