There may be a risk during Christmas after a disruption in a big supply chain because of a cyber attack which had shut down the Australian seaports previously on Friday.
DP World, which is in charge of managing 40% of the container shipments in Australia, was under a major cyber attack in the previous week, which resulted in restriction of access to the ports in Sydney, Brisbane, Melbourne, and Fremantle.
While the ships were still able to pick up and offload containers, the tech systems that allowed the trucks to share their data with the stevedore were completely turned off. This means the trucks were not able to use the terminals of DP World to drop off or collect containers.
Exports and imports were immensely delayed because of the same reason, with almost 30,000 shipping containers that were abandoned on the docks.
Experts have predicted that it may take weeks for the organization to get back to its usual operations, generating concerns about the imported goods’ availability.
“All imported containerized cargo will be impacted, which could potentially range from medical supplies through to toys for Christmas,” said the head of Freight & Trade Alliance, Paul Zalai. “The full impacts will be known in coming days in terms of the nature of goods stuck in the thousands of containers sitting idle at DP World’s terminals nationally,” he further added.
Experts have also given warnings regarding a potential increase in costs would be an add-on to the already high inflation rate in Australia and may put more pressure over the Reserve Bank of Australia to increase the rate of interest in December.
Shane Oliver, the chief economist at AMP, said that prolonged disruptions to the operations of DP World would be a shock in supply, which may force the hands of the RBA on the rates of interest. “If it is a few days then I think we can get through without too much impact. But if it is weeks, however, it could be a supply shock and they tend to be inflationary. That would mark a bigger problem and then it also presents a dilemma for the Reserve Bank,” Dr. Olive added.