Herbert Smith Freehills has published a new global guide on supply chain difficulties arising from the COVID-19 pandemic and associated restrictions and solutions.

Supply chain difficulties are at the heart of the pressures facing businesses during the COVID-19 pandemic. In our latest guide we look at supply chain pressure points and what is being and can be done to alleviate them.

Click here to access the COVID-19: Pressure Points:Supply Chain Difficulties guide .

In particular we focus on maintaining the links in supply chains (including managing supplier financial distress); competition laws and their relaxation in some cases to relieve supply issues; product-related issues emerging from over-demand or lack of supply (including counterfeiting, misleading advertising and collaborations); and contractual suspension or termination issues including force majeure. Environmental, social and governance (ESG) and human rights issues are also explored.

The guide includes country-specific overviews and insights on the issues covered, including, in relation to the above product issues, content from the UK, Italy, France, EU, China, Russia, Australia, the US, South Africa and the UAE.

The intellectual property and advertising issues discussed in the Product Issues section of the guide, fall into three main areas:

  • Accessing resources/supplies/components
  • Counterfeiting, misleading advertising, parallel imports
  • Innovation and collaboration
In situations where demand outstrips supply or a supply chain fails, product replacements or alternatives may be supplied instead. Imports may be triggered from alternative jurisdictions where products are more freely available or cheaper (but which were never designated for the relevant market), counterfeit products may emerge, or customers may be misled by advertising. At the same time innovation and collaboration, either internally or with third parties – even competitors – may develop to generate new products now needed in the crisis or to replace pre-existing but now unobtainable ones.
Read more on this in the Supply Chain Difficulties guide linked above and see our blog post on COVID Counterfeits and our Innovation and Collaboration hub and client report and the COVID-19 specific publications there.
Key contacts
Mark Shillito

Mark Shillito
Partner, Global Head of Intellectual Property
+44 20 74662031

Joel Smith

Joel Smith
Partner, Head of Intellectual Property, London
+44 20 7466 2331

Alexandra Neri

Alexandra Neri
Partner, Head of Intellectual Property, Paris
+33 1 53577830

Laura Orlando

Laura Orlando
Partner, Head of Intellectual Property, London
+39 02 00681351

Rachel Montagnon

Rachel Montagnon
Professional Support Consultant, IP, London
+44 20 7466 2217