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Economics (Spotlight Brief 2/21)

4 May 2021

Improving supply chain resilience through preparedness

Source: Security Challenges – Oct 20

Increasingly discussed prior to 2020, COVID-19 brought Australia’s vulnerability to trade disruption into stark reality. Until recently, there has been little from a Departmental (any Department) or overall Government side that has sought to understand our supply chain vulnerabilities and potential mitigation. The disruption of supply chains due to the pandemic has highlighted how these failures exacerbate security tensions. The recently released Inquiry into the implications of the COVID-19 pandemic for Australia’s foreign affairs, defence and trade by the Commonwealth Parliament highlighted four key markets with potential disruption: critical minerals, defence industry, medical supplies and fuel. Andrew Dowse and John Blackburn consider these four, along with ICT, to focus on impacts to Defence, revise a risk management approach, and describe how Defence can work with other Departments to prioritise and improve Australia’s overall resilience.


‘Italy's block on AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccines prompts warning against 'vaccine protectionism' from Australian government’, ABC News, 09 Mar 21

‘Rethinking national and global supply chains’, The Strategist, 15 Dec 20

‘Inquiry into the implications of the COVID-19 pandemic for Australia’s foreign affairs, defence and trade’, Joint Standing Committee on Foreign Affairs, Defence and Trade, Dec 20

‘How to build more secure, resilient, next-gen U.S. supply chains’, Brookings, 03 Dec 20

‘Australia-Japan-India Trilateral Sets Sights on Supply Chain Resilience’, The Diplomat, 02 Oct 20

The views expressed in this article and subsequent comments are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of the Australian Army, the Department of Defence or the Australian Government.

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