This document provides an introduction to the supply chain resilience initiative developed jointly by the British and Australian governments.
It draws on the experience we have both gained on supply chain resilience through work in the British Government’s Global Supply Chains Directorate and the Australian Government’s Office of Supply Chain Resilience.
The United Kingdom and Australia have similar public sector approaches to identifying and addressing supply chain challenges. Following informal collaboration, our cooperation on supply chain issues was formalised at the 2021 G20 Leaders’ Summit in Rome, where we agreed to a joint project to assist interested partner governments facing similar challenges.
We are pleased to offer a joint program, sharing our insights and experience on supply chain resilience.
Through this project, we hope to:
- share our best practice approaches in recognising supply chain vulnerabilities and risks
- promote solutions to achieving supply chain resilience
- support co-operative international efforts to ensure robust and sustainable global supply chains.
The intended outcome of this project is that you gain insights into enhancing public sector approaches to managing critical supply chain risks, in order to improve your country’s own supply chain resilience.
The importance of resilient supply chains
Strong global supply chains that can resist shocks and surges in demand are essential for our health, safety and wellbeing, our shared international interests as a global community, our economic stability, and for our own national and regional security.
Resilient supply chains are also vital for a safe, secure, and prosperous global trading system. They are the cornerstone of robust and sustainable economies all over the world, not just in the United Kingdom and Australia, and are underpinned by open, free, and rules-based trade.
We recognise this and are unified in a belief that interconnected global supply chains are a source of strength, and that resilience comes from diversity of supply, not from total self-reliance. Where intervention is needed, we advocate for the minimal intervention necessary to make critical supply chains resilient.
Our shared global principles
The United Kingdom and Australia have a common starting position when building resilience in critical supply chains.
We take a market-first approach, believing that all trading nations prosper from open economies characterised by free and fair trade, where openness itself confers resilience.
We rely on industry and expert insights to identify emerging supply chain risks and we encourage industry-led solutions through liaison with business, experts, nations, regions, states, and territories.
We work to coordinate whole-of-government advice on actions to support critical supply chain resilience, including through international engagement.
A tailored approach to resilience
The modules that we have developed highlight the key principles and approaches we recommend for building public sector capability to identify and respond to critical supply chain risks. They outline how this works in practice in the British and Australian government systems.
We explore how these 2 similar and useful, but non-prescriptive, examples have led to enhanced public sector supply chain resilience and provide a starting point for how a similar model could look in your context. From here, we encourage you to adapt principles and examples to your own unique circumstances and set of supply chain challenges.
Outline of the modules
Identifying risks in critical supply chains
The United Kingdom and Australia have both developed frameworks for analysis and assessment of global supply chain risks and challenges.
Module 1 will explore the principles of these frameworks and provide you with insight on how you might apply them to your situation.
Actions to mitigate supply chain risks
To build resilience, it is important that governments are aware of, and know how to apply, the range of options available to address disruption risks. Module 2 outlines the principles you might use to identify and implement responses that are proportionate and effective in increasing resilience.
Monitoring and regular review
A rigorous review process and active monitoring are imperative to maintaining ongoing resilience and adaptation to evolving global pressures. Module 3 includes insight on some processes that help ensure robustness in planning and ongoing monitoring to promote longer term resilience.
There is value in having a centralised body within government responsible for coordinating responses to supply chain risks. Module 4 shows how you could establish a similar capability within your own government, with consideration to the possible structure and placement.