Shipper Perspectives: South and Southeast Asia Sourcing Strategies — Tackling the Challenges
The decline in US imports from China that started in 2018 accelerated in the first half of 2020 as the US-China trade war and COVID-19 took a toll on trade between the two countries. The main beneficiaries of China’s loss of market share of US imports have been countries in Southeast Asia, particularly Vietnam, and, to a lesser extent, India. But as shippers who shifted their sourcing have discovered, matching China’s sophisticated labor force, world-class inland and port infrastructure, and shear might aren’t easy to replicate. The result has been supply chain challenges ranging from equipment shortages, transshipment issues, and COVID-related labor disruption — and a rapid recovery in China-sourced imports in the second half of 2020. Daniel Krassenstein, global supply chain director for packaging manufacturer Procon Pacific, has experienced these challenges firsthand while overseeing a sourcing shift from China to South and Southeast Asia over the past several years. In this one-on-one discussion, Daniel will analyze the opportunities and pitfalls companies face in deciding whether to shift or at least diversify their sourcing away from China.