New Delhi:

The demand for online products from e-commerce giant Amazon has shot up between 35 per cent and 50 per cent for items that could not be delivered because of restrictions in earlier phases of the lockdown across India as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.

“There is a lot of consumption that customers make to lead their lives normally,” said Amit Agarwal, the country head of Amazon India. “In the last 24-28 hours, orders placed have gone up three times.”

E-commerce players such as Amazon and Flipkart were only allowed to deliver essential items earlier in parts of the country where there were no containment zones and where no COVID-19 positive patients reside, a restriction that has been removed in the latest lockdown announced earlier this week.

“We are delivering what customers need, empowering businesses of all sizes, building an ecosystem that is safe, providing employment,” said Mr Agarwal.

Amazon believes they may not be impacted by a lack of demand given the state of the economy, which has ground to a halt after industries and business operations were shut down by the government.

“These are unprecedented times. We all need to do our bit to help revive the economy,” said Mr Agarwal. “We see this crisis as a great opportunity (and an) important responsibility.”

India saw $35 billion in online sales in 2019 with the Indian e-commerce sector expected to grow to $200 billion by 2026.

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