Thomas J. Donohue Thomas J. Donohue
Advisor and Former Chief Executive Officer, U.S. Chamber of Commerce


May 20, 2019


E-commerce has become so ubiquitous that few consider the complex series of events that take place between the click of a mouse and the ring of a doorbell. But that series of events – and the vast network of global supply chains that make them possible – are what keep the modern economy moving. That’s why the U.S. Chamber of Commerce is shining a light on global supply chains and steps businesses and governments can take to strengthen, streamline, and protect them.

Supply chains are the arteries of American commerce. They affect companies large and small, are essential to U.S. competitiveness, and help determine our quality of life. Yet we rarely think about supply chains because they are all but invisible to most people – as they should be.

In reality, supply chains aren’t some invisible force. They are a driving factor in the most critical debates of the day – a fact highlighted at last week’s Global Supply Chain: Future Trends
summit. The purpose of this event, and all our efforts in this arena, is to help policymakers see the panoramic view on global supply chains.

Take infrastructure. This issue has assumed center stage in Washington, and supply chains are a necessary part of the conversation. In the White House and on the Hill, the Chamber is pushing to modernize seaports, airports, roads, and rail – the connective tissue of our global supply chain system. And we are calling for a swift, private sector-led rollout of a secure 5G network, which will provide supply chain managers with vast amounts of data delivered at speeds 10 to 100 times faster than 4G.

Trade is another issue deeply intertwined with global supply chains. To preserve and strengthen the flow of goods across North America, we are urging Congress to quickly approve the U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement. We are also pushing for a positive resolution to U.S.-China trade talks to prevent disruption to the global supply chain—just one reason I was in Beijing last week.

Cybersecurity is also a global supply chain issue. Our supply chains have been powerfully transformed by e-commerce and data-driven innovation. But, in turn, they have been exposed to a host of new risks. So the Chamber has formed the Supply Chain Working Group to advocate for policies that safeguard our economy from malicious malware and other digital threats.

Supply chains impact every business and every American. That’s why the Chamber will continue to leverage its lobbying muscle, deep resources, and expertise to modernize global supply chains for the consumers and companies that rely on them.

About the authors

Thomas J. Donohue

Thomas J. Donohue

Thomas J. Donohue is advisor and former chief executive officer of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce.

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