Delays in the manufacture and distribution of the products have not yet recovered from the forced stoppages caused by the pandemic.
The possibility of having a few shelves of supermarkets at Christmas be empty due to lack of stocks is a scenario for which the Portuguese must prepare. The alert is made by Portuguese Association of Distribution Companies which, through the voice of its president, points to the rise in the costs of raw material, lack of components (like the famous chips) and the container crisis as being at the origin of this prediction.
“They are provoking many constraints for the import of products from outside Europe and that have a significant weight in the specialized retail“, he explained to Eco. Gonçalo Lobo Xavier, general director of the association, also spoke about a “explosive cocktail that may have impact” in Portuguese purchases, especially at a time of year marked by the consumption.
The manager guarantees that the “retailers They are all to fight so that many of the consequences of this scenario are not felt”; even so, there is “a latent risk that there may eventually be failures in some categories of products”.
Among the products that are most likely to be out of stock, says Gonçalo Lobo Xavier, are the “electronic equipment of consumption and in the toys“because they are “products that tend to come from outside Europe and that may be at risk”. “We don’t want, at all, alarm the consumers, but in some product categories, if there is a high demand, we may have difficulty in reset stocks,” he explained.
In his statements, the general director of the Portuguese Association of Distribution Companies also tried to blame a possible disruptive situation on the distributors and no to retailers, since not the usual channels for transporting products that are not working. He also appealed to political leaders to face the current scenario as “a opportunity to relaunch European industry”.
Eco also heard from distributors who describe the scenario in the port sector as “completely crazy“, with shipowners setting prices up to ten times higher than those charged before the pandemic, especially on the routes of Asia to the Europe.
Second Mario de Sousa, CEO of Portocargo, there is “a lot of accumulated merchandise waiting for space on ships” and at risk of arriving in Europe only after Christmas. The official explained that the factories are taking a long time. more time to produce and deliver the products and that the distribution imbalance of containers around the world, which began shortly after the emergence of the first cases of covid-19 in China.
“Whatever is not already shipped, it doesn’t come before christmas the Europe. And in addition to the high transport price, it is necessary to realize that, as long as the goods are ready, until there is space to ship, the delay is in five to six weeks“, alert.