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Supply chain disruption in the face of the COVID-19 pandemic

Author(s): Andraya Frith, Wendy Gross, Shira Dveris

Dec 13, 2021

The COVID-19 pandemic has raised significant challenges for the global supply chain. This is a result of unprecedented demand for goods paired with ongoing restrictions on travel and production. While the global business community is slowly beginning to emerge from COVID-19, the supply chain disruption caused by the pandemic continues to be front page news. Whether it is ongoing labour shortages, factory and plant closures, semiconductor chip scarcity, container shortages and port delays, or lumber and other commodity supply volatility, the interconnectedness of global business and the fragility of the supply chain that underpins it have never been more apparent.

Despite the gradual easing of pandemic-related restrictions, the disruption to the supply chain is far from over. Supply chain uncertainty and delays are predicted to continue to create challenges for Canadian businesses well into 2022. As businesses have become more attuned to these supply chain risks and the vulnerability inherent in certain traditional approaches to supply chain risk management, they have begun to re-evaluate their contractual rights, processes and remedies in the event their own supply chain is affected.