sábado, julho 01, 2017

"A lack of workers"

"China Daily reported in 2015 the building of the first robot-led plant in Dongguan by the Guangdong Everwin Precision Technology company, in which it planned to use 1,000 robots to reduce the labour needed for the factory by 90 per cent.' The gearing is interesting, as the assistant general manager of the company indicated that sixty robots could take an assembly line that needed 600 workers in the past down to 100. So, not fully dark, but a significant reduction in the number of hands involved in the production process.
This story is repeated in factory after factory, across sectors and companies around China. The Cambridge Industries Group (CIG) wants to replace two-thirds of its workers in a factory making optical networking equipment in Shanghai because labour costs have doubled over the past seven years and they face competition from automated manufacturing in Germany and other traditionally high-cost economies, According to Gerald Wong, the CEO of CIG, 'It is very clear in China: people will either go into automation or they will go out of the manufacturing business:. The main driver for these changes? A lack of workers. Hiring is difficult in the region, with estimates of a shortage of 100,000 workers from the local government. It may seem counter-intuitive to those outside China that there is a labour shortage in these areas, as the narrative was companies moving east to access the lower labour costs where hands were abundant. That has changed, as wages in manufacturing have risen and China's working-age population begins to shrink. According to some estimates, between now and 2050 China will see the number of its population aged between fifteen and fifty-nine shrink by 212 million." For the planners and factory owners across China, it looks as if they are hoping to pivot from labour-intensive manufacturing to robot-intense manufacturing, leaping forward to become a high-tech centre for making."
Tendo em conta o que a Toyota e a Mercedes já aprenderam com a automatização, esta tendência pode contribuir para um acelerar do reshoring por causa da falta de flexibilidade e as exigências de quantidades mínimas crescentes por modelo.

Por outro lado, a "lack of workers" relatada leva-me a fazer um paralelismo com as celuloses e os modelos cancerosos de crescimento. É preciso apostar num crescimento baseado na subida na escala de valor e não na quantidade pura e simples.

Trecho retirado de "From Global to Local" de Finbarr Livesey

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