Dhaka, Oct. 25 -- Volkswagen is entering into direct purchase agreements in unprecedented areas to tackle the worst supply chain shortages the company has seen, its purchasing chief Murat Aksel said on Tuesday.

The carmaker was also building a database to help predict geopolitical, natural and supply chain risks ahead of time, as it did for financial risks after the 2008 financial crisis, Aksel added, according to Reuters.

"We never used to talk to mining operators - now we know their business model," Aksel told a conference in Berlin. "It is no longer enough to rely on Tier 1 suppliers - we need to look behind the curtains ourselves."

Volkswagen was experiencing a shift in power from a buyer's market to one where the carmaker was incr...