Ayear after President Biden signed Executive Order 1407 on America’s supply chains, seven cabinet agencies published follow-up reports with assessments and recommendations for strengthening critical U.S. supply chains.
These assessments culminated in a report of 100-Day Reviews published by the White House in June 2021, which identified significant risks in the supply chains for products deemed critical to U.S. national and economic security, including: semiconductor manufacturing and packaging; large capacity batteries; critical and strategic minerals; and pharmaceuticals and active pharmaceutical ingredients.
One-Year Sectoral Assessments
The latest assessments are the second phase of the process and detail specific policy recommendations and proposals for strengthening and ensuring resilient supply chains. Links to the reports with areas of focus for each are as follows:
Department of Defense: Securing Defense-Critical Supply Chains
Focuses: kinetic capabilities; energy storage/batteries; castings/forgings; and microelectronics.
Department of Energy: America’s Strategy to Secure the Supply Chain for a Robust Clean Energy Transition
Focuses: carbon capture materials; electric grid; energy storage; fuel cells and electrolyzes; hydropower including pumped storage hydropower; neodymium magnets; nuclear energy; platinum group metals and other catalysts; semiconductors; solar photovoltaics; and wind supply.
Department of Commerce Department of Homeland Security: Assessment of the Critical Supply Chains Supporting the U.S. Information and Communications Technology Industry
Focuses: software, including risks associated with open-source; as well as manufacture of printed circuit boards; fiber optic cable; printed circuit board assemblies and subassemblies; routers, switches, and servers; and LCDs/Displays.
Health and Human Services: Public Health Supply Chain and Industrial Base
Focuses: personal protective equipment; durable medical equipment; testing and diagnostics; and pharmaceuticals.
Department of Transportation: Transportation Industrial Base Freight and Logistics
Focuses on: physical infrastructure (including needed developments); congestion and bottlenecks; data availability and research gaps; supply chain security; freight and warehousing; and rules and regulation.
Department of Agriculture: Program and Policy Options for Strengthening Resilience
Focuses: consolidation within the industry; labor; ecological and climate risks; transportation bottlenecks; and international trade.
Most of the supply chain vulnerabilities identified in the reports reflect fundamental problems in U.S. industrial bases that require long-term solutions, such as a lack of domestic manufacturing capacity, decaying infrastructure, and lack of skilled workforce.
For the most part, the reports do not announce the creation of new programs to address the supply chain vulnerabilities they identify. Instead, they call for Congress to increase funding through existing or pending legislation – such as the Bipartisan Infrastructure Bill, the Creating Helpful Incentives to Produce Semiconductors for America Act (“CHIPS Act”), and America Creating Opportunities for Manufacturing, Pre-Eminence in Technology, and Economic Strength Act (“America COMPETES Act”), in addition to agency-specific policy changes.