17 September 2021 17:51

Australia, India and Japan launch Supply Chain Resilience Initiative

The Trade Ministers of Australia, India and Japan have formally launched the Supply Chain Resilience initiative.

“The SCRI aims to create a virtuous cycle of enhancing supply chain resilience with a view to eventually attaining strong, sustainable, balanced and inclusive growth in the region. The Ministers consented that expansion of the SCRI may be considered based on consensus, if needed, in due course.”

This was launched in a Trilateral Ministerial Meeting held virtually on 27 April 2021 between Mr. Dan Tehan, Australia’s Minister for Trade, Tourism and Investment, Mr. Piyush Goyal, India’s Minister for Commerce and Industry, and Mr. Kajiyama Hiroshi, Japan’s Minister for Economy, Trade and Industry.

Mr. Dan Tehan 1
Image Source: Mr. Dan Tehan, Australia’s Minister for Trade, Tourism and Investment – Wikipedia.

The Ministers acknowledged that the COVID-19 pandemic was having an unprecedented impact, in terms of “lives lost, livelihoods and economies affected.”

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They also agreed that “the pandemic had revealed supply chain vulnerabilities globally and in the region.”

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Images Source: Mr. Piyush Goyal, India’s Minister for Commerce and Industry – Twitter.

The Ministers also noted that some supply chains have been left vulnerable due to a range of factors.

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Image Source: Mr. Kajiyama Hiroshi, Japan’s Minister for Economy, Trade and Industry – Wikipedia.

The Ministers also noted the importance of risk management and continuity plans.

This is much needed initiative in order to avoid supply chain disruptions and affirmed their commitment to strengthen resilient supply chains.

Ministers noted that the possible policy measures may include: (i) supporting the enhanced utilization of digital technology; and (ii) supporting trade and investment diversification.

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Image Source: Shipping – Wikipedia.

The Ministers have now instructed their officials to implement the following as initial projects of SCRI and further develop the Initiative: (i) sharing of best practices on supply chain resilience; and (ii) holding investment promotion events and buyer-seller matching events to provide opportunities for stakeholders to explore the possibility of diversification of their supply chains.

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In addition, the Ministers have decided to convene at least once a year to provide guidance to the implementation of the SCRI as well as to consult on how to develop the Initiative.

With an eye on China, the Ministers directed their officials to meet as often as required to take the Initiative forward.

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