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ECA, SELECT warn members of materials and product shortage

Jordan O'Brien

Jordan O'Brien

Contributing Editor
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While the UK may be recovering from the Covid-19 pandemic, supply chains are still suffering, leading to long lead times for products.

While the UK may be recovering from the Covid-19 pandemic, supply chains are still suffering, leading to increasingly long lead times for many products. 

The Electrical Contractors Association and SELECT have teamed up to urge their members to plan ahead to get around this materials and product shortage. That could mean ordering products well in advance of when you need them. 

This latest warning comes as BEAMA cautioned that demand was likely to outstrip supply for products for many months to come, spurred by the recovery from the Covid-19 pandemic. The manufacturer’s trade association said a dramatic reduction in global steel production in the early days of the pandemic had led to severe shortages.  

It added that, since mid-2020, the call for the types of steel used in cable management products, along with other applications, has increased as businesses attempt to meet a growth in demand and complete unfinished projects.

It’s not just cabling that is suffering, there is also a global chip shortage, impacting products across multiple industries. That includes everything from smartphones to electric vehicles and just about anything else that requires the use of computer chips. 

ECA’s CEO, Steve Bratt, commented, “When planning a project, bear in mind the world has changed. Delays in availability of some materials is impacting on cost and completion time. Our advice is to order the materials you need in good time to ensure you can finish as planned. We are in an evolving situation, our Member support will keep you informed as and when things change.”

Alan Wilson, Managing Director of SELECT, added, “Shortage of materials is an issue that will affect all contractors, so it’s vital for everyone to plan ahead and take proactive measures now.

“We join ECA in urging all Members to keep abreast of any updates and recognise that this could well be an issue as the year develops. Ordering well in advance and factoring in for potential shortages and rising costs will help if there is any ongoing disruption to the supply chain.”

Both organisations are urging any Members who are experiencing issues or want to find out more, to get in touch. ECA and SELECT are committed to offering advice and finding solutions to help their members overcome yet another obstacle created by these unprecedented times.

The joint call comes two weeks after ECA and SELECT met to identify key strategies and how to continue their close collaboration.

The two leading electrical trade bodies discussed skills, training and the green revolution during the virtual meeting as they debated priorities for the second half of 2021 and beyond.

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