© Reuters File Photo: US President Joe Biden addresses the Virtual CEO Conference on Semiconductors and Supply Chain Resilience from the Roosevelt Room at the White House in Washington, USA, April 12, 2021.
Written by Alexandra Alper, Steve Holland and Nandita Bose
WASHINGTON (Reuters) – President Joe Biden on Wednesday called on the private sector to help curb supply chains in the face of threats to disrupt the US holiday season, and said the White House was planning nationwide reforms to the frozen system.
Biden said the port of Los Angeles will join the port of Long Beach, which is the busiest in the country, extending operations around the clock, waiting for coastal vessels to unload an estimated 50,000 containers.
Walmart (NYSE :), Target (NYSE 🙂 and other large retailers, Biden said, to run their overnight activities at the port.
The United States, the world’s largest consumer market, is a “big first step” in reforming supply chains, Biden said, adding that the government will be heavily involved.
“If federal assistance is needed, I will direct all appropriate action, and if the private sector does not move forward, we will call them and ask them to do the work,” the president said at the White House.
The larger goal, he said, is to address long-term weaknesses in the U.S. supply chain.
The stop-and-start nature of the epidemic has suppressed the global supply chain which is optimized for the periodic movement of products.
The supply crisis is partly driven by the global Covid-1 pandemic epidemic, as sales of sustainable products increase amid labor shortages and a recession in the transport hub https://www.reuters.com/business/autos-transportation/containergeddon-supply-crisis- drives walmart-rivals-hire-their-own-ships-2021-10-07. The lack of warehouse workers and truck drivers is partly responsible for the collection of goods.
The relatively low Christmas sales could hurt U.S. companies and create a political risk for Biden, who is already struggling with other domestic issues in his first year in office.
A recent Reuters / Ipsos poll shows that the economy is still the most important issue for Democrats and Republicans.
White House officials say Americans may face higher prices and some empty shelves this Christmas https://www.reuters.com/world/us/americans-may-not-get-some-christmas-treats-white-house-officials Warning due to supply chain problems – 2021-10-12 season.
White House spokeswoman Jane Sackie told reporters that Biden could not guarantee that there would be no disruption during the holidays.
Asked about the possibility of mobilizing the National Guard or other troops, he said, “All we can do is use every lever at the federal government level to reduce delays.”
Deck all hands
In addition to stop-up port operations, three major cargo companies ওয় Walmart, FedEx (NYSE 🙂 and UPS পরিকল্পনা plan to increase their round-the-clock operations to speed up shipments across the country.
Samsung (KS :), Home Depot (NYSE 🙂 and target off-peak hours are also increasing their work.
The White House expects six companies to increase their working hours to 3,500 additional containers per week by the end of the year.
Biden spoke after meetings with officials from the two ports and the International Longshore and Warehouse Union, Teamstars, AFL-CIO, Walmart, FedEx, UPS, Target, National Retail Federation, American Tracking Association, Pacific Maritime. Associations, and more.
Some of the CEOs scheduled to attend mentioned that they were already working twenty-four hours a day. “We’ve been running 24/7 supply chain operations year after year,” Target CEO Brian Cornell said in a blog post, https://corporate.target.com/article/2021/10/supply-chain- Updated before the meeting.
Target handles about 50% of its containers that arrive at the port of California at night, he wrote, and is committed to increasing this amount by 10% over the next 90 days.
The Consumer Brands Association called on the White House to bring in private sector experts and government officials to help set up a supply chain war room and quickly identify problems.
“We cannot ignore the high price warning signals and reduce the availability,” said Geoff Freeman, chief executive of Trade Group.
The White House is trying to tackle the supply-side barrier of everything from meat to semiconductors. The administration formed a task force in June that met weekly and named the “Botnake” jar, John Porkary, to find ways to get goods to private-sector companies.