Procurement: companies hope for an improvement by the end of 2022

Faced with supply difficulties for several months, companies are relatively optimistic and hope for an improvement in the situation by the end of the year, as revealed by the latest Banque de France business situation report.

Supply difficulties unlikely to last more than a year

Every month, the Banque de France takes the pulse of the various business sectors and provides growth forecasts through its business surveys. Each note de conjoncture is based on interviews with over 8,000 managers of companies of all sizes, located throughout France.

According to the latest Banque de France conjoncture report, for which 8,500 business leaders were questioned between January 27 and February 3, there is cautious optimism regarding the supply difficulties that companies have been facing for several months.

Despite their increase since the beginning of the year, following a slight downturn in both industry and construction, three-quarters of the business leaders surveyed believe that these difficulties should not last more than a year, and expect an improvement by the end of 2022.

Business resilient despite epidemic rebound

In detail, 73% of companies in the manufacturing sector and 75% of those in the construction sector believe that the supply difficulties encountered in shipping and other sectors will not last more than a year. Only 10% of companies in the industry sector believe they can be resolved within 3 months, compared with 14% of companies in the construction sector.

In industry, the most pessimistic companies are those in the metal and automotive sectors. Fewer than 60% of companies in the metalworking sector, and just over 60% in the automotive sector, expect supply difficulties to disappear by the end of 2022.

By contrast, companies in the agri-food, pharmaceutical and chemical industries are more optimistic, with 80% believing that these difficulties will last no more than a year.

Despite these difficulties, to which were added other disruptions such as the increase in absenteeism linked to the epidemic rebound, activity rose " very slightly " in construction and industry in January.

Production capacity utilization exceeded pre-pandemic levels in most sectors, with the exception of the automotive and aeronautics industries, which were hampered by persistent component shortages.

In addition, 52% of companies in all sectors faced recruitment difficulties in January, with a slight increase in the construction and industrial sectors.

According to the Banque de France, GDP, which returned to its pre-crisis level in the 3rd quarter of 2021, should exceed it by 1 point in January, as it did in December, then by 1.5 points in February. Growth should be at least 3.6% in 2022.