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  • Writer's pictureJeremy Conradie.

Supply Chain Closing 2022 in Better Shape

The supply chain of the largest economy globally is ending 2022 in a much better position than a year ago. According to White House Supply Chain Envoy Stephen Lyons.

In 2021, there were concerns about shortages in stores and warehouses, rapidly rising prices to ship goods and thousands of containers stacking up at the nation’s ports as railroads could not move items fast enough.

I always take people back to where we were a year ago. We had 109 ships queued up outside of San Pedro Bay. Once we got past the chaos, the finger-pointing, the significant monetary losses for many, the enormous profits for some, and the inflationary pressures that impact every consumer, it really did lead to a lack of confidence in the supply chain, and frankly for good reason. So, it’s important to reflect a little bit on what just happened. The truth is that record volumes of cargo moved through the supply chain, but it was ugly and it was chaotic."

I am an optimist by nature, cautiously optimistic, always. I think the consumer demand will stay. I think imports will stay and continue to grow,” Lyons said. “I think the supply chain will continue to normalize itself and build back a level of reliability. … So I see a positive 2023 coming about.” - Stephen Lyons

He also says that now the private sector and government must take the lessons learned in the pandemic and apply them as soon as possible.

The ending although fairly abruptly of China's Covid Zero policy also hopefully bodes well for supply chains in 2023. Although uncertainty is still hugely prevalent given the slowdown in demand in some markets and the continuing and potentially widening conflict in Ukraine. Inflation is, although still fairly high historically, stabilizing.

Locally, the resounding reelection of Cyril Ramaphosa as president of the ANC at the organization's recent leadership conference hopefully ensures some clarity of policy and stability in South Africa. And gives him the scope to make more of the changes promised by the renewal and "New Dawn" campaign after the state capture years under Jacob Zuma.

We at Nucleus, are also optimistic about the opportunities and ready for the challenges that 2023 holds. Bring it on.

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