Jan. 6, 2016—The labored progress in U.S. manufacturing, which has moved in fits and starts over the past year, may be hiding a trend that could disrupt the global landscape for industrial production.
At a time when many believe China’s role as a manufacturing powerhouse is waning, Chinese companies are investing in factories in the U.S. And Chinese manufacturers are leveraging the knowledge they’re gaining in the U.S. factories back home to help them move from low-value sectors into higher-value markets and products.
American manufacturers should heed this trend and be prepared to compete with China Manufacturing 2.0. The increased presence of Chinese manufacturers in the U.S. is significant. Auto parts conglomerate Wanxiang Group, which operates 13 plants in the U.S., is taking part in the effort to revive the premium hybrid car brand Fisker under the name Elux by building a factory in southern California. Shandon Tranlin Paper Co. recently chose Richmond, VA, for a plant a make household products like napkins, tissues and even organic fertilizer.
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