By Paul Page
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The supply chain for Covid-19 vaccines is about to get a lot
busier. A new U.S. government deal to buy 100 million more doses of
Pfizer Inc.'s Covid-19 vaccine will bolster a national inoculation
campaign, the WSJ's Peter Loftus and Rebecca Ballhaus report, as a
broader international rollout of the first shots authorized for
approval picks up speed. Aircraft carrying the vaccine developed by
Pfizer and German partner BioNTech SE along with doses from Moderna
Inc. have transported the shots to Mexico, Singapore and other
sites, and the European Union its own distribution plan. The new
U.S. agreement will have Pfizer provide 70 million more doses by
the end of June, with 30 million to follow by the end of July. But
the scale of the expansion, along with deliveries of syringes and
other equipment, will put more demands on logistics networks than
the initial, smaller rollout.
China's big e-commerce sector is bracing for an upheaval.
Chinese regulators are taking actions against market behemoth
Alibaba Group Holding Ltd. and its payments partner Ant Group, the
WSJ's Liza Lin, Lingling Wei and Chong Koh Ping report, ramping up
the country's efforts to rein in its technology giants and
billionaire Jack Ma. China's top market regulator launched an
antitrust investigation into Alibaba and authorities are pressing
Ant to meet new financial restrictions. The actions mark Beijing's
strongest enforcement action against a technology empire that has
growing influence on digital commerce markets around the world. The
antimonopoly regulator says it was acting on reports that Alibaba
was pressuring merchants who sell goods on its marketplaces to
withhold business from the platforms of competitors JD.com Inc. and
Pinduoduo Inc. The moves put China in some ways into closer
alignment with efforts by global regulators and the U.S. technology
SUPPLY CHAIN STRATEGIES
Peloton Interactive Inc. is trying to build a U.S. supply chain.
The home-fitness giant's agreement to buy major fitness-equipment
manufacturer Precor Inc. for $420 million will add 625,000 square
feet of U.S. manufacturing capacity to Peloton's armory, the WSJ's
Laura Forman writes. That eventually should help Peloton get its
exercise equipment to American customers faster after a period when
the company's logistics operations struggled to keep up with an
explosion in demand under the coronavirus pandemic. Peloton uses
third-party manufacturers in Taiwan but says it plans to start
manufacturing its own connected fitness devices in the U.S. by the
end of 2021. Bringing back domestic manufacturing has been a focus
of Washington trade policy in recent years. But Peloton is
responding to market realities that suggest the only limits on its
growth may be supply constraints. Wait times for its most expensive
bike now are over 10 weeks.
The latest cash crop on U.S. farms doesn't need to be shipped to
markets. Big agriculture companies including Bayer AG, Nutrien Ltd.
and Cargill Inc. are trying to develop farming-driven carbon
markets, the WSJ's Jacob Bunge writes, and allow retailers, food
makers and other companies to offset their emissions by buying the
carbon credits. Agricultural companies, long criticized as
environmental villains, say paying farmers to maximize their
natural processes can put the scale of modern farming behind a
potential climate solution. For farmers, the plan could lead to a
new source of income that depends less on weather and agricultural
commodity markets. The strategy is to pay farmers for their fields'
capacity to withdraw carbon dioxide from the atmosphere and trap it
in soil. That would mark a new way of tying together supply chains
in an agriculture sector that the Environmental Protection Agency
estimates accounts for 10% of U.S. greenhouse gas emissions.
IN OTHER NEWS
The U.K. and the European Union reached an agreement on trade
relations as Britain prepared for its divorce from the bloc.
Personal spending in the U.S. fell 0.4% in November for the
first drop in seven months. (WSJ)
The number of U.S. workers seeking unemployment benefits fell
but remained near historic highs. (WSJ)
Canada's economic output rose 0.4% in October, slowing from the
previous month's gain. (WSJ)
Nikola Corp. and Republic Services Inc. stopped collaborating on
development of a zero-emissions garbage truck and Republic dropped
an order for potentially several thousand vehicles. (WSJ)
Tucked inside the $900 billion coronavirus relief package is
$200 million in aid for loggers and trucking companies. (WSJ)
Shares in Shopify Inc. and Etsy Inc. soared in 2020 on growing
business at their e-commerce platforms during the pandemic.
Sales of gift cards have been soaring amid consumer concern over
store visits and shipping delays. (WSJ)
Supplies of holiday hams and some pork products are stretched as
Covid-19 precautions challenge meatpackers' workforces. (WSJ)
Lufthansa Cargo began airlifting fruit and vegetables from
Europe to the U.K. to get around massive backlogs at surface border
crossings. (The Guardian)
LG Electronics will spin off part of its electric-vehicle
components business and set up a $1 billion joint venture with
Canada's Magna International. (Financial Times)
Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Corp. is recruiting 600
engineers and executives for its planned factory in Arizona.
(Nikkei Asian Review)
Nike Inc. is benefiting from supply-chain investments such as a
fulfillment center in Los Angeles to back direct-to-consumer
service. (Supply Chain Dive)
Amazon will push back planned fee increases for third-party
sellers using the company's fulfillment service until June.
Hong Kong-based on-demand logistics company Lalamove raised $515
million in a Series E funding round aimed at extending its reach in
Germany's Hapag-Lloyd AG ordered six liquefied natural
gas-powered vessels with capacity for 23,000 containers each.
Container lines are looking to improve their schedule
reliability by extending the published transit times of sailings.
Liquefied petroleum gas carrier Epic Gas and the gas carrier
unit of J. Lauritzen are combining their fleets under a single
business, BW Epic Kosan. (Splash 247)
India's government is selling its controlling stake in maritime
operator the Shipping Corporation of India. (Business Standard)
Container terminal operator DP World will build a deep-water
port in Senegal about 30 miles from the Dakar port. (Reuters)
U.S. logistics provider Amware Fulfillment acquired Los
Angeles-basedMoulton Logistics. (DC Velocity)
Oxford University researchers are testing a process aimed at
turning carbon dioxide into jet fuel. (Wired)
Paul Page is editor of WSJ Logistics Report. Follow the WSJ
Logistics Report team: @PaulPage, @jensmithWSJ and @CostasParis.
Follow the WSJ Logistics Report on Twitter at @WSJLogistics.
Write to Paul Page at firstname.lastname@example.org
(END) Dow Jones Newswires
December 24, 2020 11:14 ET (16:14 GMT)
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