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Ukraine conflict fuels supply chain concerns

LONDON (AFP) – At a logistics expo in London this week, Russia’s invasion of Ukraine dominated discussions, rather than interest in the latest package-tracking devices or how to kick-start the sector after the coronavirus pandemic.

A week of fighting has forced many companies to suspend operations out of Ukraine as well as Russia, as world governments began imposing tough financial sanctions.

Now there are fears the conflict could cause more disruption to the sector and hinder recovery from the pandemic, which battered world supply chains.

Business development director at Zencargo Dan Smith-Cox told AFP: “We’ve seen a few manufacturers pull into eastern Europe from Ukraine and Russia as opposed to China.”

“A lot of production is moving to Turkey,” he said at the Retail Supply Chain & Logistics Expo at London’s giant ExCeL conference venue.

Another attendee, who declined to give their name but works in the metal cutting sector, said they bought raw materials from Poland, Russia, Germany and Ukraine.

Many of their suppliers were directly impacted, he said, fearing even tougher times ahead.
Ratings agency Moody’s called Russia’s invasion of Ukraine “the greatest risk” facing supply chains since the pandemic – and the conflict is already having an effect.


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