Nove smeri razvoja: Reshoring

Razvoj in evolucija sta zabavna reč. Enkrat tečemo priti vzhodu, ker je tako moderno, nato tečemo proti zahodu, ker je nekdo rekel, da je to moderno. V času Kardelja smo imeli “Smeri razvoja političnega sistema socialističnega samoupravljanja, ki je bil obupan poskus reševanja nerešljivega. V času kapitalistične globalizacije smo imeli trendne smeri razvoja, imenovane “offshoring” in “outsourcing”, kar je lepa beseda za prenos domače industrije drugam, najraje v Latinsko Ameriko ali Azijo. No, sedanja kriza kot posledični produkt nagrmadenih globalnih trgovinskih in kapitalskih neravnotežij, je pokazala, da so bile te “offshoring” smeri razvoja morda napačne.

ZDA so v tem procesu “offshoringa” izgubile skoraj polovico delovnih mest v industriji. Zamenjali so jih cenejši delavci v Mehiki, Kitajski in Filipinih. Zdaj prihaja obrnitev trenda – “reshoring” naj bi vrnil nazaj domov izgubljeno industrijo. Ampak podobno kot pri Kardelju, se to zdi obupan poskus reševanja nerešljivega.

Kot sem pisal pred dvema letoma, bo zaradi oblikovanja “globalnih verig vrednosti” (pri čemer je na enem koncu dizajnersko podjetje v ZDA, vmes en kup proizvajalcev sestavnih delov ter končni sestavljalec na Kitajskem, na drugem koncu pa spet isto podjetje iz ZDA, vendar tokrat kot prodajalec) izgubljena delovna mesta težko povrniti v velikem obsegu. Okrog proizvajalcev komponent (večinoma v Aziji in Evropi) ter sestavljalcev (večinoma v Aziji in Mehiki) so se oblikovali grozdi ponudnikov materiala in sestavnih delov. Vse to je na Zahodu med tem izginilo in bo težko spet postaviti na noge, sploh pa po primerljivih stroških.

Nemčija tukaj ne bo imela velikih težav, kajti modnosti trenda “offshoringa” se je uspešno upirala. Težave  pri “vračanju domov” pa čakajo V. Britanijo in ZDA. The Economist je podobno skeptičen glede namer Cameronove vlade. Težave niso samo zaradi izginulih domačih dobaviteljskih verig, pač pa tudi zaradi izginulih znanj delavcev ter visokih cen zemljišč:

Reshoring is now an integral part of his government’s policy to bring more manufacturing back to Britain to “rebalance” the economy away from an over-reliance on dodgy banks. In a speech earlier this year Mr Cameron said that Britain needed to seize the opportunity of changes in global economic circumstances, such as rising costs in emerging markets, to persuade companies to come home. Britain could become “the reshore nation”, he pronounced. The government has set up an agency, Reshore UK, to help firms come back. The government’s Manufacturing Advisory Service also encourages firms to locate or relocate here.

However, it is very doubtful whether this heralds the dawn of the reshore nation. Marcus Gibson, who compiles a database of 50,000 small- and medium-sized companies, says that in the six months up to last August only 64 had reshored, involving under 1,000 jobs. Lee Hopley, an economist at EEF, acknowledges that, for all the companies reshoring, “there is probably still more production going the other way”, and the reasons for that are telling.

Anthony Cooper of Versarien Technologies, an engineering company, has had experience with manufacturing abroad and at home. He argues that the biggest problem with reshoring is that the decline in manufacturing over the decades means that the supply chain has all but disappeared. Apart from the car industry, it is now very hard to source machine tools, or indeed anything else essential to starting up a production line, in Britain. The shortage of skilled labour is another constant complaint. Skilled workers are there, says Mr Cooper, but “you have to hunt for them.” The price of property is another disincentive. Factory buildings cost a lot, and very high house prices force wages up, reducing margins.

Vir: The Economist

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