Covid and Brexit break the production supply chain just in time

Just-in-time global manufacturing supply chains have been replaced in British factories with “just-in-case” arrangements and more local suppliers after the epidemic and Brexit disrupted production schedules.

A survey by members of the Federation of Engineering Employers in Make UK found that the last two years of supply chain dislocation have ended decades of offshore sourcing elements. Nearly three-quarters of manufacturers have increased their number of British suppliers, with half saying they will do so in the future.

The survey also found that more than one-third of manufacturers have increased the total number of suppliers in the last two years. A quarter of companies now have between 50 and 100, and one-seventh say they have more than 200 in their books.

On-time production ensures that the materials and parts arrive at the right time to be aligned with the assembly and production schedule. The low-cost economy, usually the source of supply from China and Southeast Asia and Eastern Europe, is the offshoring trend for Western manufacturers.

“In response to globalization, manufacturers have long adopted a strategy of offshoring, virtually managing processes in a timely manner, including guaranteed transport links and low-cost production, reversing disruptions and rapidly normalizing instability,” the report said. Done.

“The economic downturn has led companies to significantly increase the number of suppliers so that they have more options in the event of a disruption. These suppliers are increasingly returning to the United Kingdom or Western Europe.” Mack UK says the war in Ukraine and the coup d’tat in China could further accelerate the trend.

Of the 132 manufacturers surveyed by Make UK, 93 per cent blamed the epidemic for supply chain disruption, while 87 per cent blamed their problems for the changes caused by Brexit. For one-third and one-half of manufacturers, the disruption has been “major” or “catastrophic,” they said.

Variety Davids, policy director at Make UK, says: “For decades, manufacturers have used globalization and supply chains to build efficiency and build lean manufacturing processes that have helped them grow and stay competitive. We may now see the age of globalization approaching its peak, with disruptions and instability in global trade rapidly becoming normal. For many companies, this means leaving behind at the right time and embracing at the right time. “

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