Supply Chains: Risk and Complexity

This report from The Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU), sponsored by Standard Chartered, brings up the risks and complexity of global supply chains. The report is based on in-depth interviews and expert research. 

Supply chains everywhere are subject to risk from natural disasters or infrastructure breakdowns, but those in developing economies are arguabliy more susceptible to geopolitical risk: Military conflicts and policital instability. 

Key Findings: 

  1. Diversification is needed to minimise fallout from supply-chain disruption
  2. Risk mapping and monitoring are important to understanding supply-chain vulnerabilities
  3. Scenario analysis helps in developing response options
  4. Emerging-market firms cede little to Western rivals in risk management



  • Executive summary
  • Part 1: Managing geopolitical risks
    • A complex equation
    • Adapting to a new world
  • Part 2: Geopolitical scenario analysis
    • Tensions between Russia and the West reach a new level
    • Middle East tensions lead to a severe oil-price shock
    • A trade dispute erupts in the Asia-Pacific region
    • Advances in technology accelerate and shock global supply chains
    • Renminbi internationalisation gains significant speed
  • Conclusion: The virtue of visibility

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