by Kevon Browne
St. Kitts and Nevis (WINN): “The supply chain issue is global, but I don’t think we felt the brunt of it yet because like everything we kind of always in the Caribbean, feel the effects a few months later,” said President of the Chamber of Industry and Commerce Giselle Matthews.
“But even for myself in business and those of us who are retailers, we are having challenges sourcing items already, and even delivery dates on Christmas are delayed. We are seeing a backlog of deliveries to forwarders.”
The annual rate of inflation from October 2020 to October 2021 in the United States was 6.2 percent. That inflation will trickle down to the pockets of the everyday man as businesses and importers start to feel the effects of that inflation.
“I think that the freight rates are ridiculous. We know that that’s happening globally. And so inflation in the US, we know it’s happening already. And these are matters that we need to, you know, deliberate on; how can we control these.”
The Chamber president suggested that businesses come together and consolidate shipments to share freight rate costs and “maybe consolidating my shipments in larger quantities rather than smaller and looking at other source markets to source of goods than the just the every day [goods] that you’ve used all along you might have to start to look at other alternatives.”
Additionally, Matthews noted that businesses have begun to observe as much as a 50 percent increase on a 40-foot container to bring in goods.
“So say you were bringing our container directly from China, they are those persons who have said that they have gone from, you know, 4,000 to 10,000 US on a 40 footer. I think it’s even gone further.”