Digital modeling systems could help avert disruptions from war, pandemics
Supply chain management digital- The trade protectionism and export-restriction approach the world was seeing pre-COVID has to change to a cooperative one to restore trust in global supply chains and maintain the benefits global trade growth has brought over the last two decades, a Conference Board of Canada report said.
A further shift to digital tools could be a key to that.
Conference board senior economist Julie Adès said in an interview the digital shift was happening before the outbreak.
“What we have been experiencing over the last few weeks may be a catalyst that would accelerate that trend. It may be a wake up call to some business to re-evaluate the way they operate with their supply chains and to invest in those technologies that would allow them to be more resilient in terms of facing future shocks.”
Further, the April 27 report suggested, containment measures imposed to halt COVID-19 give businesses a post-pandemic opportunity to re-skill laid off or cut-back workers so they are in a better position to tackle the new business, employment, and technological realities that will be more mainstream once the crisis ends.
The situation, the report said, has accelerated changes already underway before COVID-19 hit.
Overall, the report found, demand and supply shocks to Canada’s key trading partners—the United States, China, the EU, and the U.K.—are severely disrupting global supply chains and battering Canada’s export sector.
Depressed U.S. economic activity will have a profound impact on Canada’s export sector, with raw materials such as crude oil and durable goods such as motor vehicles and machinery and equipment taking the brunt of hits on the goods side. On the service side, exports of travel and transportation services will be hit hardest, it said.