Technology

Why Supply Chains Are Entering Third Year of Chaos: QuickTake

For two years, the pandemic threw the vital but usually invisible world of logistics into a tailspin, creating shortages of goods including masks, memory chips, plastic polymers, paper towels and bicycles. Though the cargo industry’s ships, trains, trucks and planes continued to run full steam, they struggled to absorb the rolling tremors from Covid-19 — jolts to consumer demand, idled factories, employees getting sick or forced to work from home. The result: a sudden shortage of shipping containers, long delivery delays, a sustained period of soaring freight rates and higher prices for consumers. Now, Russia’s war in Ukraine and China’s continued hard line against Covid outbreaks pose the latest difficulties; both increase the uncertainty and costs of operating still-hobbled supply chains smoothly.

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