WASHINGTON—The Biden administration outlined new measures Tuesday to address widespread supply-chain issues, with a goal of bringing manufacturing back to the U.S. and diversifying access to foreign-made materials such as rare-earth minerals used for batteries.
The steps, which include the creation of a new government supply-chain task force, are the result of a 100-day review that President Biden ordered in February, as the pandemic exposed problems that continue to affect key industries, including auto making.
The review covers four areas: semiconductors, used in products from cars to phones; large-capacity batteries used in electric vehicles; pharmaceuticals and rare-earth elements that are key to technology and defense.
“While amplified by the public-health and economic crisis, decades of underinvestment and public-policy choices led to fragile supply chains across a range of sectors and products,” says a White House document summarizing the findings. “At the same time, the reviews find that the United States is well positioned to maintain and strengthen our innovative leadership and rebuild our productive capacity in key sectors and value chains.”
The secretaries of commerce, transportation and agriculture will make up a new supply-chain task force focused on sectors that have experienced supply disruptions and demand issues, including home-building and construction, semiconductors, transportation and foods, officials said.