The United States Presidential candidate, Joe Biden has announced a new plan to bolster the U.S supply chains of critical goods needed to combat Coronavirus pandemic.
The plan reiterates many of the principles and priorities Biden has outlined in speeches and previous policies, including the more aggressive use of the Defense Production Act to manufacture Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) for front-line workers.
“We will marshal all of the tools of the federal government to procure the necessary supplies to fight the COVID-19 pandemic, distribute a potential vaccine for the virus and shift the production of relevant materials back to U.S. soil”, Joe Biden said.
According to a fact sheet on the plan distributed by the campaign team on Tuesday, the Democrats candidate said when elected as U.S President, he will implement a 100-day review immediately after being sworn into office.
“The goal here is to have a combination of sufficient domestic production, plus sufficient stockpile, plus sufficient surge capacity. And how you allocate across those three will differ depending on the critical good. And that is fundamentally going to be determined by the outcome of that 100-day review,” he said.
He added that he will also identify critical national security risks across America’s international supply chains and will ask Congress to enact a mandatory quadrennial Critical Supply Chain Review to institute this process permanently.
Biden’s plan would also use the Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority (BARDA) to make sure vaccine production is adequate and work to undo Trump administration tax incentives to encourage on-shore pharmaceutical production.
The plan includes specific language on working with allies across the globe as well, to better prepare supply chains and production of required equipment, reducing the reliance on countries like Russia and China.
“Just like the United States itself, no U.S. ally should be dependent on critical supplies from countries like China and Russia. That means developing new approaches on supply chain security — both individually and collectively — and updating trade rules to ensure we have strong understandings with our allies on how to best ensure supply chain security for all of us,” Biden’s new plan states.
The new policy comes as the United States continues to contend with rising case numbers in over 35 states.
Since the first cases of COVID-19 were detected in China in December, the United States has become the country worst-affected by the virus, with more than 2.9 million diagnosed cases and at least 130,430 deaths, according to the most recent count.
By Agnes Melissa Yovo | talksafrica.com