In a New York Times article by John Markoff about Google’s “American Made” production of its wireless home media player, Harold L. Sirkin of Boston Consulting Group said in April one third of American companies with revenue over one billion are planning/considering returning their manufacturing operations to the U.S. The increased cost of labor, energy, and transportation in China coupled with the risk of intellectual property theft—not to mention a drive to work for engineers as opposed to flying 16 hours—can make production at home more attractive. Finding component suppliers nearby is the biggest challenge. Sirkin says, “At 58 cents an hour, bringing manufacturing back was impossible, but at $3 to $6 an hour, where wages are today in coastal China, all of a sudden the equation changes.” He adds the return of manufacturing could bring two to three million jobs to the nation. As MHProNews has learned, job growth is key to revitalizing the housing market.
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