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Photographer: Qilai Shen/Bloomberg

Why Europe Finds It Hard to Break Chinese Supply Chains

The pandemic’s rupture of global trade networks has companies and governments looking closer to home. It may not be that easy.

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Covid-19’s fracturing of supply chains has left businesses and governments questioning the prudence of networks that crisscross the planet. Pandemic recovery plans talk of developing “strategic autonomy” in key sectors, and suggest that executives should bring production closer to home. But on the ground, companies say it’s not so easy. 

Host Stephanie Flanders hears from Frankfurt-based Bloomberg reporter Piotr Skolimowski and a German pharmaceutical executive about why it’s so hard for Europe to extract itself from Chinese supply chains. She also speaks with World Trade Organization Chief Economist Robert Koopman and Renaissance Capital’s Global Chief Economist Charles Robertson on the future of global trade and investment. They discuss what trade might look like in a post-coronavirus world, whether so-called reshoring is actually a good idea, and why emerging market economies might ultimately benefit from Covid-19.