White House Acts on Supply Chain Issues

The administration takes steps to implement parts of the infrastructure bill, which has yet to be signed.

November 10, 2021

Cargo on ships

ALEXANDRIA, Va.—Supply chain issues at ports, waterways and freight networks are being addressed by the Biden Administration though a set of immediate and short-term actions, the White House announced yesterday.

The White House said that the goals and actions "lay the foundation for successful implementation of the historic Bipartisan Infrastructure Deal. This action plan will increase federal flexibilities for port grants; accelerate port infrastructure grant awards; announce new construction projects for coastal navigation, inland waterways, and land ports of entry and launch the first round of expanded port infrastructure grants funded through the Bipartisan Infrastructure Deal."

Biden hasn’t signed the infrastructure bill into law yet. Yesterday’s White House actions include flexibility for port grants through the Department of Transportation to solve supply chain disruptions, funding for a pop-up container yard project at the Port of Savannah, a $420 million grant program for ports and marine highways that will be launched within the next 45 days and identifying coastal and waterway projects for $4 billion in funding for U.S. Army Corps of Engineers construction, CNN reports.

The Savannah port container yard project is expected to provide immediate relief ahead of the holiday season, according to CNN. A Deloitte survey found that Americans are planning to spend close to what they did in 2019, with spending on experiences (including socializing, travel and entertainment) expected to increase 15% over 2020. Forty-three percent of retail executives already expect their ordered holiday inventory to be delayed, and 64% are concerned about receiving inventory in time for the holidays. This is despite 43% of retailers placing their holiday orders earlier than in 2019, even as early as March.