White House to connect US supply chain with FLOW

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The Biden-Harris Administration has announced the launch of Freight Logistics Optimization Works (FLOW) to enhance information exchange throughout the US supply chain.

The initiative will see 18 initial participants work alongside the White House to develop a proof-of-concept information exchange to ease supply chain congestion, speed up the movement of goods, and cut costs for American consumers.

These key stakeholders include private businesses such as Target, warehousing and logistics firms such as FedEx, and Port Authorities for the Ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach.

“The lack of digital infrastructure and transparency makes our supply chains brittle and unable to adapt when faced with a shock,” said the Biden-Harris Administration in a media briefing.

“The goods movement chain is almost entirely privately operated and spans shipping lines, ports, terminal operators, truckers, railroads, warehouses, and cargo owners such as retailers.

“These different actors have made great strides in digitising their own internal operations, but they do not always exchange information with each other.

“This lack of information exchange can cause delays as cargo moves from one part of the supply chain to another, driving up costs and increasing goods movement fragility.”

The US Department of Transport (DOT) will lead the initiative, bringing supply chain stakeholders together to problem solve and overcome coordination challenges.

In order to gauge additional interest as the initiative grows, DOT will also launch an official webpage.

The initial phase of FLOW aims to produce a proof-of-concept freight information exchange by the end of this summer.

The announcement seeks to build upon the previous achievements of the Biden-Harris Supply Chain Disruptions Task Force. This includes reducing dwell time in Los Angeles and Long Beach and alleviating congestion at the Port of Savannah.

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