Bernard Arnault

PARIS — LVMH Moët Hennessy Louis Vuitton said Sunday it will manufacture and distribute hand sanitizer to French health authorities for free in order to fight the spread of coronavirus, or COVID-19.

“Given the risk of shortage of hydroalcoholic gel in France, Bernard Arnault has instructed the LVMH Perfumes and Cosmetics business to prepare its production sites to manufacture substantial quantities of hydroalcoholic gel to be provided to public authorities,” the company said.

Starting Monday, all the production facilities of the group’s perfumes and cosmetics brands, including Parfums Christian Dior, Guerlain and Parfums Givenchy, will produce and distribute bottles of hand sanitizer to be delivered free of charge in France, prioritizing Parisian hospitals.

Since the first cases of COVID-19 were detected in the country, French consumers have cleared out stocks of hand sanitizers in pharmacies and grocery stores. In Paris, most pharmacies have had to put up signs informing people that they are fully out of both protective masks and hand sanitizers, two of the main tools used to limit contamination.

French pharmacies are excluded from the government’s forced closure of “nonessential” public spaces to limit the propagation of the virus, which was announced on Saturday.

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