The Shortage Economy and its Effects on Condos By: Jennifer Dickenson, RCM
Our office is forced to answer the question “ What is taking so long!? ” multiple times per day. Condo managers are not the only ones encountering these concerns from homeowners, but it is definitely near and dear to our hearts. We are not only living through a pandemic but also a “ Shortage Economy ”. Some of you may remember one major shortage economy in the past: the gas shortages of the 70s. Supply Chain Effects We ’ ve all read the news mentioning the microchip and semiconductor shortages but these shortages are not just in the electronics industry. Other factories were also shut down during the pandemic, while online orders increased. Most South - East Asian factories, which specialize in industrial materials, shut down and that hit many construction and manufacturing industries harder than many realized. It ’ s not always that the material isn ’ t being made, however. Logistical bottlenecks continue to prevent materials from getting to the companies that make end - user goods. As rich countries continue to purchase, global supply chains are straining under the demand, showing how neglected they ’ ve been over the decades, as industries relied on the ‘ old ways ’ to do business. Increases in shipping costs, due to de - carbonization cause our prices to increase or force companies to absorb the increases by either decreasing their already strained workforce or changing their offerings/risking
closure by trimming their profit margins. Globally, the top industries affected are gasoline, coffee, semiconductor chips, diapers, chicken, lumber and toilet paper. There may not be physical shortages of the material (now that we ’ ve made it through the great toilet paper shortage of 2020), but shipping and costs are drastically affected. The IMF recently commented that the world is witnessing “ pandemic - related supply - demand mismatches and higher commodity prices ” and the recent USMCA trade agreements are written more with protectionism in mind, not efficient access to goods. This is to say, there ’ s a surge in demand and supply can ’ t keep up. The Pandemic has presented a unique set of challenges to the Supply Chain. Imports are often held longer and then inspected more thoroughly, due to risk of the virus transmission. If just one component is delayed, the whole production of the end - product is on hold. We ’ re also becoming more socially conscious as a society, which is great, but it can have unforeseen effects on the consumer. Canada is currently looking at banning imports from Xinjiang, China (where there are ‘ re - education camps ’) unless companies can show the items imported weren ’ t made with forced labour. This affects raw materials like cotton and solar panel ingredients. Canada was also ‘ surprised ’ by some goods being held by Chinese shippers while Meng
Jennifer Dickenson, BSC (Hons), RCM is a condominium manager with Dickenson Condo Management. She was first elected to the CCI Board of Directors in 2016 and has been energetically involved in all aspects of the board planning and execution. She also served as the National Representative to the chapter from June 2020 to June 2021. Following the 2021 AGM, Jennifer was elected by the CCI Board of Directors to serve as President for the upcoming year.
CCI Review 2021/2022 —November 2021 - 22
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