Majority of C-suite leaders say geopolitical tensions pose biggest threat to supply chains

Majority of C-suite leaders say geopolitical tensions pose biggest threat to supply chains

•    78% of global business leaders say geopolitical tensions pose the most severe threat to supply chains right now
•    A quarter of global businesses have had no discussions about plans or  processes to combat the effects of climate change 

BDO LLP surveyed 500 C-suite executives across Europe, MEA, APAC and the Americas for the seventh year running to understand their approach to risk management and how they are responding to global events that threaten their businesses.

The report reveals that supply chains are breaking and changing like never before. 59% have planned an alternate supply chain as a backup over the last 18 months to make their supply chain more resilient. 23% intend to do this over the next 18 months and 55% of respondents had found alternate suppliers to help mitigate supply side risk stemming from Russia’s War in Ukraine. 

In addition to concerns on supply chain, business leaders have shown how they are responding the climate crises. While an encouraging 62% have begun to put in place plans and processes to prepare for the impact of climate change on their supply chains, 25% have had no discussions of this topic at board level. A worrying sign that some businesses are not investing in this issue soon enough. 

Nigel Burbidge, Global Chair, Risk Advisory Services at BDO, says: “Our survey results exposed some hard questions that organisations will need to ask themselves if they are serious about mitigating supply chain risks. Although the pandemic meant businesses across the globe had to adapt and diversify supply chains, lessons from this unprecedented worldwide crisis are not always being applied to future risks.” 

BDO’s survey shows that 29% of those surveyed do not have a risk management professional in a c-suite position, 38% of respondents with under-resourced supply chain risk management ranked cyber-attacks as the top priority. In addition, none of the under-resourced respondents felt they had a full understanding of location and threats faced by their Tier 1 suppliers.

Nigel continues, “There are no simple solutions for weathering ongoing and forthcoming supply chain storms. As uncertainty is set to continue on an international scale and businesses need to prioritise sustainability and environmental stewardship issues, the case for resilient supply chains is stronger than ever.”


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Emma Ordidge 
PR Manager, BDO LLP
Tel: 020 7893 3000

BDO press office: 
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