Beijing’s zero-tolerance approach amid an escalating virus outbreak brings the pandemic full circle, more than two years after its emergence in Wuhan upended the global economy.
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Although global supply strains started to ease in early 2022, the situation is worsening again as headwinds strengthen from the war in Ukraine and China’s COVID-19 lockdowns.
Oil is now topping $110 a barrel, while European natural gas hit an all-time high this week. Wheat soared past $11 a bushel to the highest level in 14 years.
Supply chain issues and high shipping rates have thrown a spotlight on the market concentration of shipping lines and their legal immunity from antitrust laws.
New indicators underscore the extremity of the problem, the world’s failure to find a quick fix and how in some regions the Big Crunch of 2021 is still getting worse.
A year ago, as the pandemic ravaged country after country, consumers were the ones panic-buying. Today, on the rebound, it’s companies furiously stocking up.
Food is piling up in all the wrong places, thanks to carriers hauling empty shipping containers.
Some factories complain they can’t consider new orders until the clogged pipeline clears.
The industries that shepherd goods around the world on ships, planes and trucks acknowledge they aren’t ready to handle the epic challenges of shipping an eventual COVID-19 vaccine from drugmakers to billions of people. Already stretched thin by the pandemic, freight companies face problems ranging ...