A resurgent global economy, led by the US, is likely to boost world trade this year, despite a series of acute disruptions to already strained supply chains, including last week’s blockade of the Suez Canal.
Polls from manufacturers around the world, released Thursday, vividly illustrated the current pressures on global supply chains that supply consumers with everything from computers to garden chairs.
In these surveys, factories found an almost universal complaint: It is becoming increasingly difficult and expensive to procure enough raw materials and other supplies to meet increasing customer demand. Some manufacturers are reporting record export orders.
However, there has been little evidence that the trade-driven revival in factory production that began in mid-2020 is coming to an end.
The global pent-up demand after a year of Covid-19 restrictions was so high that shippers are running out of containers for shipping goods by sea. Despite these bottlenecks, the World Trade Organization expects cross-border flows of goods to increase by 8% this year, more than reversing the 5.3% decline in 2020 when the pandemic hit factory production and shipping.