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Is there a supply chain crisis?

  • 27/09/2021
  • Jane Bray

As motorists are urged to stop panic buying fuel, Boris Johnson admits that Britain’s supply chain strain could last until after Christmas and is concerned about potential shortages of other goods leading up to 2022.

Speaking on the matter, Johnson said, “What we want to do is make sure that we have all the preparations necessary to get through until Christmas and beyond – not just in the supply of the petrol stations, but all parts of our supply chain. You’re seeing the global economy really sucking in a huge amount at the moment, for gas, for lorry drivers. There are shortages around the world … but we’ve got to make sure we have everything in place as the recovery continues, and that’s what we’re doing.”

Currently, there is uncertainty about exactly which goods will be disrupted by the shortage of about 90,000 heavy goods vehicle (HGV) drivers. Sources have predicted that shops and supermarkets shelves won’t run bare, but that the number of different brand products available to customers will be tightened.

Ministers have tried to head off fears of a second winter of discontent by issuing temporary visas for lorry drivers and poultry workers to see the country through until Christmas, suspending some competition rules for the fuel delivery industry and also putting the army on standby to drive tankers if it’s required.

An official request was made and approved for army support if needed. Soldiers are not yet being deployed, but the sign-off by the Ministry of Defence means the military can begin specialist training to learn how to drive fuel tankers.

The stark reality is that supply chain issues are likely to last months and seemingly into next year. SMEs will undoubtedly be the hardest hit, with less buying power for stock and materials and will have less capacity to absorb rising costs.

Here at CoCredo, we understand the struggles that SMEs are facing at the moment, especially with potential supply chain issues.

We strongly advise our customers to use due diligence on not only your suppliers but where possible the supply chain. We can provide credit reports on companies in over 235 territories worldwide. Please speak with your Account Manager who will be able to advise you.