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Christmas will be poorer. Mobile phones, consoles and e-bikes may be missing

According to traders, problems with the supply of some products have persisted since last year, and the chances that the situation will improve by Christmas are very low. “This can apply to virtually all consumer goods imported from China and Southeast Asia, whether it is an artificial Christmas tree, a bicycle or a computer,” points out Miroslav Novák, an analyst at Akcenta.

“We recommend customers to start buying gifts as soon as possible, because it may happen that the offer will not be as wide in some categories as they were used to,” agrees Pavla Hobíková, spokeswoman for the online retailer Mall.cz. “Typically, these will be popular electronics, such as laptops up to 15,000 crowns, but also printers, mobile phones, graphics cards, game consoles, e-bikes or home appliances,” adds Hobíková.

The world is worried about the lack of products and raw materials

“Some deliveries of goods are up to a year late. The problem with availability also applies to typically Christmas goods, for which demand still exceeds supply. We are currently experiencing major outages, for example in dishwashers, ”adds Eva Kočicová from the Datart electronics retail chain.

There is no risk of surface outages

The delay in the delivery of some items is also confirmed by the largest domestic toy network Pompo. “For some suppliers, these are only minor outages, but a few of them did not deliver up to fifty percent of the ordered items,” says Lucie Nedvědová, the company’s marketing manager.

However, customers do not have to be afraid that there are no dolls or toy cars. “We always take the given assortment from several different companies and it depends on them how they managed the deliveries of goods,” specifies Nedvědová.

Christmas will be demanding, staff and halls are missing, says Simona Kijonková from Zásilkovna

However, the multinational furniture giant IKEA, which lacks hundreds of products from the range of furniture and home accessories, has not been able to supplement the warehouses for a long time. The American Apple recently announced the restriction of the production of new iPhones 13, which will be delivered to the market by ten million less than originally planned due to the lack of chips.

Christmas will obviously be poorer abroad as well. In the UK, for example, where the transport of goods is complicated by Brexit, there is a risk that there will not be enough books and gifts from the Harry Potter franchise in stores before the holidays, the BBC wrote last week.

The British and Americans are in danger of a modest Christmas.  Toys, trees and turkeys may be missing

It’s too late to frontload

Traders most often cite the global shortage of chips and raw materials in the market, the persistence of restrictions in some countries related to the pandemic, or the lack of air and shipping capacity as the reasons for the outages.

“In some cases, it has risen in price by up to ten times, which is of course reflected in the higher price of goods. Therefore, some suppliers decide not to bring them at all, “says Hobíková.

According to Novák, sellers can partially prevent problems by trying to order the largest possible volume of goods for storage as soon as possible. “On the other hand, this poses a risk for companies that it will be difficult for them to sell part of the goods, with higher stocks means higher costs,” says Novák.

Christmas carp becomes more expensive.  Třeboň fishermen estimate the price at 120 crowns per kilogram

Economist Michal Skořepa from Česká spořitelna, on the other hand, believes that it is already largely too late for such a solution in terms of this year’s Christmas. “The situation in logistics chains will rather worsen in the coming weeks. It will not help to quickly find new suppliers, because similar problems affect most of the world, “warns Skořepa.

Problems will not end after the holidays

The companies themselves assure that they are doing everything in their power to speed up the delivery of scarce gifts to stores and that, despite the difficulties mentioned, they are generally well prepared for the Christmas season. At the same time, however, they admit that part of the goods will be missing next year as well. “In some categories, we do not expect an improvement until 2023,” says Hobíková.

During the pandemic, the Czechs got used to online shopping, they use them stably

Therefore, many marketers are already solving future difficulties. “The situation in production and transport is very variable. One week everything goes smoothly and the next week there are complications with loading and unloading. That is why we have already started preparations for next year, the goal is to secure the goods on time, “informs Nedvědová.

Of course, according to experts, it is possible to make money on the current crisis. “Enterprises that have been able to pre-supply in time and are able to respond appropriately by adjusting the price according to demand and supply will be at a great advantage,” says Novák. “Companies providing insufficient truck and ship transport are experiencing golden times,” adds Skořepa. According to Novák, on the part of consumers, those households that can give up the consumerist concept of Christmas will benefit in particular.

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