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Southeast Asia, Latin America Set to Gain in Post-Pandemic Supply Chains

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Companies across the world are re-examining their sources for many kinds of goods because of supply issues linked to the COVID-19 pandemic. Many businesses – from multinational clothing makers to electronics manufacturers – are considering other countries for imports as they move away from China. China was hit hard by the pandemic and the government established a “zero-COVID” policy.

This led to widespread problems in the worldwide supply chain. Experts say that means countries in Southeast Asia and Latin America are becoming new go-to places for much-needed goods. When Southeast Asian countries – including Vietnam, Thailand, and Indonesia ­– were lifting pandemic restrictions, China set lockdowns in two major cities. The lockdowns affected factory orders and caused worker shortages, which raised product prices.

Vietnam has a lead because of its skilled workforce, pro-business reforms, and a network of free trade agreements. Electronics companies Samsung and Intel both operate in Vietnam, as do foreign-invested car factories.

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