Christmas shopping crisis: Supply chain and logistics expert available

Christmas shopping crisis: Supply chain and logistics expert available

An expert from RMIT University is available to talk to media about the global supply chain crisis.

Associate Professor Vinh Thai

Topics: Australia Post, Christmas expectations, empty shipping containers, COVID-19 economic recovery

“If you’re thinking about ordering items for Christmas, do so as early as possible.”

“I have no doubt customers in Australia will experience a shortage of products for this Christmas and pay a higher price, especially those that require chips.

“The current shortage of supply is largely due to a shortage of empty sea-going containers, as most consumer products such as electronics, clothing, and white goods are transported in these containers.

“Increasing supply capacity requires investment in infrastructure and this takes time.

“A logjam of sea-going containers is not unprecedented, but this has been exacerbated by a perfect storm of other factors:

  • Lockdowns disrupting workplaces along the supply chain,
  • a reduction in port workers and vessel crews,
  • infected cases at ports and terminals triggering the closure of facilities
  • more people are staying and working from home, resulting in money that would normally be spent on holidays is being spent on electronic goods for work and entertainment
  • Industrial action at parcel delivery companies
  • A mismatch of working times between Australian truck drivers and ships at sea.

“There is currently a backlog of empty containers at container parks in Australia, which desperately need to go back to the high-exporting countries but have no ship to take them.

“The economic recovery in the aftermath of the COVID-19 pandemic will be slowed down due to current supply chain issues.

“Think about switching to alternative products available in the market, shop local, or think about how to celebrate the festive season differently.

Associate Professor Vinh Thai, an expert in supply chain and logistics from RMIT University’s School of Accounting, Information Systems and Supply Chain, and founder of the Australian Maritime Logistics Research Network (AMLRN)


For interviews contact RMIT Communications, or +61 439 704 077

17 November 2021


17 November 2021


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