UK INDUSTRY TO SUFFER
Impacts are also likely to be felt on UK and other global producers who rely on so-called “just in time” supply chains.
Car manufacturers, for instance, often do not hold enough semiconductors in stock, instead shipping them in just before they are needed.
Normally, the conductors are transported in the holds of passenger planes but, during Covid, the reduction in flight number has forced these companies to turn to ships to supply them.
“Even the smallest input can sometimes bring conveyor belts to a halt because you just need that crucial part, and if it’s stuck in a container, then there’s nothing you can really do about it,” Ms Konings said.
Tom Fairbairn, an engineer at management platform Solace, said: “With the already tight supply situation for semiconductors, including a water shortage in Taiwan and a plant fire in Japan, the automotive, electronics and IT industries could be especially hard hit.”