The Biden administration is stepping up efforts to tackle the supply chain bottlenecks that have led to shortages of some goods and higher consumer prices, which is threatening to disrupt the U.S. holiday season.
President Biden announced Wednesday that the Port of Los Angeles will be working on a 24/7 schedule, bringing it in line with operations at the Port of Long Beach, which is already operating non-stop.
Those two ports handle 40 percent of America's total container traffic.
Calling this a big first step, President Biden also called for the private sector to step up their own efforts.
"This is a big first step in speeding up the movement of materials and goods through our supply chain. But now we need the rest of the private sector chain to step up as well. This is not called a supply chain for nothing. This means that terminal operators, railways, trucking companies, shippers and other retailers, as well."
The decision follows Biden's meeting with senior officials and stakeholders, including port operators, truckers' associations and major shippers, which included South Korea's Samsung Electronics.
The administration's measures are being dubbed a (quote) "90-day sprint."
The U.S. is not the only country facing a supply chain nightmare.
Britain's largest commercial port reportedly has 50-thousand containers waiting to be collected, due to a shortage of truck drivers.
This means containers are being offloaded but left stacked in the port.
This is also causing delays in returning empty containers for re-use.
Such a logjam is causing widespread concerns among retailers about future inventories.
In other parts of the world, countries are facing similar problems as ports are congested due to the rapid rebound in demand for commodities and goods, as many economies recover from the pandemic.
Shipping costs have soared, and companies that want their goods shipped are finding it hard to secure enough ships or containers.
This all comes amid a hike in consumer prices around the world.
Kim Hyo-sun, Arirang News.