This paper discusses and proposes international initiatives and mechanisms that are necessary for firms to respond to the COVID-19 pandemic and other crises; harnesses firms’ experiences in managing supply chain disruptions (SCDs) caused by natural disasters to help manage the SCDs sparked by the pandemic, and adapt a flexible supply chain framework to manage SCDs during the current pandemic. To sustain cross-border business activities during the pandemic and prepare for future crises, the publications suggests that domestic or international initiatives or mechanisms implemented by governments must prioritize:
- Building better clearance mechanisms at borders;
- Establishing a national trade facilitation body;
- Making risk-informed investment decisions to establish special economic zones (SEZs)
- and industrial parks;
- Facilitating the digital transformation of trade and of the manufacturing sector;
- Implementing consistent non-pharmaceutical interventions to mitigate the negative
- effects of the pandemic.
This paper also proposes multilateral or regional measures for multilateral or regional organizations can introduce. These proposed measures include the following:
- Facilitating knowledge sharing and creation;
- Promoting multilateral, regional, or bilateral trade facilitation;
- Leading information gathering at the global level.