Logistics refers to the planning, implementation, and control of the movement of goods and materials from one location to another (Morana, 2018). This includes coordinating transportation, inventory management, warehousing, and other related activities. Logistics is a critical component of supply chain management and is essential for businesses to ensure that goods and materials are delivered to the right place at the right time. A common motivation in all logistics disciplines is to minimize the utilization of resources. Overall, tighter border restrictions have had a significant impact on global logistics growth, leading to disruptions in supply chains, increased costs for businesses, and challenges for logistics companies. As the situation is still ongoing and changing, it is hard to predict the long-term effect, but it is clear that logistics companies and the businesses that rely on them will need to adapt to these challenges in order to maintain their operations.
Due to the significant influx of migrants from countries in South America, the Middle East, and Africa, there are many worries regarding borders and border control. To address alleged risks from terrorism, immigrants, and illegal substances, some presidential candidates have suggested extravagant designs to secure America’s borders. The complexities of the border situation that the U.S and neighboring nations are undergoing, which is characterized by the expansion of successful cross-border trade and tourism, is obscured by this divisive political jargon. While it was realistic to expect that illicit flows would also increase, the government miscalculated in thinking that tightening restrictions would improve legal trade.
Increased border security in the United States has led to several changes in how drugs are smuggled into the country (Keck & Correa-Cabrera, 2015). As border security has tightened, traffickers have been forced to develop new, more innovative ways to get contraband past the border. One of the most notable changes has been an increase in the use of tunnels to smuggle drugs into the U.S. As border security has been strengthened, traffickers have been forced to dig deeper and longer tunnels to evade detection. These tunnels are often equipped with lighting, ventilation, and even rail systems to transport drugs quickly and efficiently.
Another change has been an increase in the use of small, unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) to smuggle drugs across the border. These drones can fly at low altitudes and are challenging to detect by radar, making them an effective way to get drugs past border security. Traffickers have also started using various new technologies to conceal drugs and evade detection. For example, they have started to use 3D printers to create fake car parts that can be used to hide drugs. They have also started to use sophisticated chemical compounds to conceal the smell of drugs, making them more difficult to detect by dogs and other trained animals. Finally, increased border security has shifted the routes used to smuggle drugs into the U.S. As the border with Mexico has become more heavily guarded, traffickers have started to use other routes, such as the US-Canada border and the US-Caribbean border.
Border security has always been a contentious issue, with governments implementing various measures to control the flow of people and goods across national borders. The United States is no exception, and in recent years, border security has been tightened to prevent illegal immigration and combat criminal activities such as drug trafficking and human trafficking. While these measures may have been implemented to protect citizens and reduce crime, they have also had unintended consequences. One such consequence is an increased likelihood of human trafficking (Avdan, 2023). It is a severe problem affecting millions worldwide, often in the shadows, making it difficult to detect and prevent. However, increased border security measures have made it even harder to detect and prevent human trafficking. One of the ways that increased border security has contributed to human trafficking is by pushing traffickers to use more dangerous and secretive methods to smuggle people across borders (Sutcliffe & Anderson, 2018). As border security becomes tighter, traffickers resort to more remote and dangerous routes to get people across the border. This puts the people’s lives being smuggled at risk, making it harder for authorities to detect and intercept the traffickers.
Another way that increased border security has contributed to human trafficking is by making it more difficult for people to migrate legally. When people cannot migrate legally, they may turn to traffickers to help them cross the border. This is particularly true for people who are fleeing persecution or economic hardship. They may have no other option but to rely on traffickers to get them to safety. Finally, increased border security has contributed to human trafficking by making it more difficult for victims to escape from their traffickers. When border security is tight, it is harder for victims to escape and seek help. This makes it more difficult for authorities to detect and rescue victims, and it also makes it more difficult for victims to access the services and support they need to rebuild their lives.
The increased border security measures implemented by the United States in recent years have led to a shortage of shipping containers, significantly impacting global logistics. The main reason for this is the increased scrutiny of cargo and stricter enforcement of customs regulations, which has led to delays in the clearance process for goods. Over 180 million containers were present worldwide in January 2021. A survey revealed significant cancellations of new container orders in the first part of last year. One of the most significant changes contributing to the container shortage is using technology for border security (Trinkunas, 2015). For example, many ports of entry now use biometric screenings and x-ray scanners to inspect cargo, which has slowed the clearance process and increased the time it takes for goods to pass through. This has led to longer wait times at ports of entry, resulting in a shortage of shipping containers.
The tightening of border restrictions in response to the COVID-19 pandemic has significantly impacted global trade logistics. It has led to delays and disruptions in the supply chain, increased costs, and reduced efficiency. One of the main challenges logistics companies face is the increased time and costs associated with customs clearance (OECD.org, 2020). With stricter border controls, obtaining clearance has become more complex and time-consuming. It has led to delays in the movement of goods, resulting in increased costs for logistics companies. Additionally, many logistics companies struggle to keep up with the changing regulations and protocols associated with border restrictions, adding further complexity to the logistics process.
Another major challenge faced by logistics companies is the disruption of transportation routes. Many transportation routes have become unavailable or less efficient, with borders closed or restricted. This has led to increased costs for logistics companies, as they are forced to find alternative routes or modes of transportation. Additionally, the reduced capacity of transportation routes has led to increased competition for available space, further driving up costs. The tightening of border restrictions has also led to reduced efficiency in the supply chain. With delays and disruptions in the logistics process, many companies have been forced to hold more extensive inventories or seek alternative suppliers. This has increased costs for companies and has also led to reduced efficiency in the supply chain as companies are forced to adapt to the new logistics environment.
In conclusion, tightening border restrictions in response to the COVID-19 pandemic has significantly impacted global trade logistics. This has led to delays and disruptions in the supply chain, increased costs, and reduced efficiency. Logistics companies face increased time and costs associated with customs clearance, transportation disruptions, and reduced supply chain efficiency. Increased border security in the United States has led to many changes in how drugs are smuggled into the country. As border security has tightened, traffickers have been forced to develop new, more innovative ways to get contraband past the border. This has led to tunnels, unmanned aerial vehicles, new technologies to conceal drugs, and a shift in the routes used to smuggle drugs into the U.S. Logistics companies must adapt to the new logistics environment and work closely with governments and other stakeholders to solve these challenges. While border security is essential for protecting citizens and reducing crime, it is also important to consider the potential consequences and take steps to mitigate them. This may include strengthening protections for vulnerable populations, increasing resources for detecting and preventing trafficking, and providing support and services for victims.
Avdan, N. (2023). Human trafficking and migration control policy: vicious or virtuous cycle? on JSTOR. Jstor.org. https://www.jstor.org/stable/23351562
Keck, M., & Correa-Cabrera, G. (2015). U.S. Drug Policy and Supply Side Strategies: Assessing Effectiveness and Results. Norteamérica, 10(2), 47–67. https://doi.org/10.20999/nam.2015.b002
MoranaJ. (2018). Logistics. London Iste Hoboken, Nj Wiley.
OECD.org. (2020). Getting goods across borders in times of COVID-19. OECD Policy Responses to Coronavirus (COVID-19). https://doi.org/10.1787/972ada7a-en
Sutcliffe, J. B., & Anderson, W. P. (2018). The canada-us border in the 21st century : Trade, immigration and security in the age of trump. Routledge.
Trinkunas, H. (2015, November 20). Fear itself: Why closed borders are bad for America and the world. Brookings; Brookings. https://www.brookings.edu/blog/order-from-chaos/2015/11/20/fear-itself-why-closed-borders-are-bad-for-america-and-the-world/