Pratt: No end in sight yet on supply chain issues for construction sector

Supply chain issues continue to plague the world and Bahamian Contractors’ Association President Michael Pratt said recently that there is no guarantee when the construction sector will recover.

Pratt and several other business professionals are scheduled to tackle the supply chain issue during a roundtable discussion on Wednesday, put together by The Counsellors Limited.

Pratt said in a statement from The Counsellors about the forum that the shipment backlogs that are currently affecting the US will undoubtedly have a knock-on effect on The Bahamas, given the country’s dependence on imports.

“My position hasn’t changed. There is no guarantee exactly when the industry will get back to normal, but we know that it won’t happen overnight,” said Pratt.

“Right now, there are so many ships on the coast of California with supplies from Asia. The challenge is getting the supplies off of those ships and to us, especially when there are no trucks to move the supplies.

“People are dying, so the priority is moving vaccines and medical supplies. That has caused a backup with moving other products.

“We get the majority of our supplies from the United States, so whatever happens there affects us. When one aspect of the chain is shut down, you see a domino effect.”

President of Prime Financing and Consulting K. Karlos Mackey, who will host the virtual discussion, said in the statement that the problems stemming from the supply chain crisis also means the cost of shipping has increase.

“So, you now have a situation where not only is it taking longer to ship, it is also more costly to ship because the amount of containers that would have been available are now staying out for 45, 60 days longer than they normally would be,” said Mackey.

The construction sector was the first to feel the effects of global shipping issues and costs to the end user.

“Manufacturers are closely watching the new waves of the virus and they are reluctant to manufacture more supplies,” said Pratt.

“You also have major US contractors who have been hoarding supplies to ensure that their project is not hampered. The cost of some supplies are above and beyond the usual cost. Just imagine the massive ripple effect.”

Other contributors to the discussion on supply chain issues will be economist and author Gilbert Morris President of the Abaco Chamber of Commerce Kenneth Hutton, President of the Eleuthera Chamber of Commerce Thomas Sands and Director of Merchandising at Sysco Bahamas Food Services Tiffani Evans.

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Chester Robards

Chester Robards rejoined The Nassau Guardian in November 2017 as a senior business reporter. He has covered myriad topics and events for The Nassau Guardian. Education: Florida International University, BS in Journalism

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