Supply chains - image of ship at a container port

COVID-19 & The Future of Global Supply Chains

Factory closures, import restrictions and export bans in the wake of COVID-19 have fractured supply chains the world over, adding pressure for diversification or reshoring. Yet, these are two distinct options and neither is easy to implement, especially at a time when many firms are focused mainly on the demand picture.

The economic damage and political rancour that has followed the COVID-19 crisis is stoking protectionist sentiment in major economies. With the Doha Round long moribund, and the United States seemingly prepared to see the WTO succumb to paralysis if it cannot be reformed, the best hope for further trade liberalization is to be found within regions rather than globally. This signals a shift to shorter, regionally-focused and potentially diversified supply chains.

However, the experience of the COVID-19 crisis shows that countries cannot always rely on their near neighbours for critical supplies. Is self-sufficiency the best option?

By attending this webcast, you will be able to answer the following questions:

  • How far did the deglobalisation of major supply chains proceed in the two years before the COVID-19 pandemic?
  • Which sectors’ supply chains have been most exposed this year, and which ones have seen limited disruption?
  • Which products and services are governments now intending to designate as essential items that must be sourced domestically or regionally?
  • Which business sectors will accelerate reshoring or diversification plans as a result of the COVID-19 crisis?
  • How will investment in technology and considerations on sustainability alter these decisions?
  • Which countries are positioned to benefit if there is the diversification of global supply chains or a movement to reshoring?

July 16, 2020



Global Trade Leader


Vice President

The Boeing Company

Research Scientist and Director, Sustainable Supply Chains


Director, Supply Chain Sustainability

Dell Technologies


Head of ESG, Advisory

Oxford Analytica

Senior Economist

The Conference Board