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Ellen Lord: DoD to Audit Supply Chains of Defense, Aerospace Companies

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The Defense Department will conduct an audit of the U.S. aerospace and defense sector’s supply chains after DoD released a White House-commissioned study of the defense industrial base, The Wall Street Journal reported Friday.

Ellen Lord, defense undersecretary for acquisition and sustainment, said U.S. intelligence agencies will take part in the review to assess the local defense supply chains’ readiness to support warfighters.

Deputy Defense Secretary Pat Shanahan on Friday presented to President Donald Trump the report that was prepared in accordance with an executive order signed in July that called for a cross-government review of U.S. producers’ capacity to support the defense industrial base.

The report identified challenges to the country’s industrial base and offered recommendations to address such risks.

Those challenges include budget uncertainty; decline of U.S. manufacturing capabilities; loss of critical skills in the domestic workforce; dependence on competitor countries; and procurement issues.

The White House said Friday it plans to implement several measures in response to the report’s recommendations such as the expansion of investments in the industrial base to support suppliers, collaborate with allies and advance science, technology, engineering and mathematics education as part of workforce development efforts.