Chancellor Rishi Sunak has told Brits not to worry about their Christmas presents this year, saying there will be a “good amount of presents available” even though supply chain issues continue to persist.
Sunak was speaking after meeting with finance ministers from the G7 group of leading world economies to talk about the problem, with the politicians agreeing to work more closely to solve the crisis.
Retailers have expressed fears ongoing supply chain problems will result in higher prices and empty shelves into December, but the chief executive of the UK Major Ports Group said supply chains were “robust” and “there’s no need to panic”.
A build-up of cargo in Felixstowe has led to shipping company Maersk opting to divert vessels away from the Suffolk port, while similar logjams have been seen elsewhere in the world including in the US.
Speaking to the BBC in Washington DC, Sunak sought to reassure Britons as people begin to think about shopping for Christmas.
He said: “We’re doing absolutely everything we can to mitigate some of these challenges.
“They are global in nature so we can’t fix every single problem but I feel confident there will be good provision of goods for everybody.
I’m confident there will be a good amount of Christmas presents available for everyone to buy.
Sunak chaired a meeting of finance ministers on Wednesday as the International Monetary Fund and World Bank convene in the US capital.
The Treasury said Mr Sunak told the meeting of the “importance of global co-operation to ensure that supply chains are more resilient as the world emerges from the pandemic”.
Speaking after the meeting, Mr Sunak said: “Supply chain issues are being felt globally – and finance leaders from around the globe must collaborate to address our shared challenges.
“Today we have collectively agreed to work closely over the coming months – and together we will build a strong and resilient recovery.”