Business / Economy

Deloitte: United States to take top position from China as the most competitive manufacturing country

By Hu Yuanyuan ( Updated: 2016-04-06 20:40

The United States is expected to take over China and become the most competitive manufacturing nation over the next five years, according to a report from international accounting firm Deloitte.

According to the 2016 Global Manufacturing Competitiveness Index (GMCI) report from Deloitte and the US Council on Competitiveness, "Made in the USA" will make a big comeback in the next 5 years, and China, now the current leader, will slip into second position.

"The US is currently among the top nations in unlocking advanced manufacturing technologies including smart connected products and factories, predictive analytics, and advanced materials that are core to future competitiveness," said Tim Hanley, Deloitte Global Leader for Consumer & Industrial Products Industry group.

"The US excels at creating connections and synergy between people, technology, capital, and organizations to form a cohesive ecosystem of innovation, generating tremendous value from investments in research and development."

Contrary to the view that manufacturing is falling behind the times, the study points to a manufacturing future characterized by advanced technologies and growth through innovation. Manufacturing is sustainable, smart, safe, and surging – and America is expected to be among the leaders in this industry transformation.

The Deloitte report said that China is still the leader on manufacturing competitiveness for now, but will need to overcome some development challenges, such as an aging population, local economic slowdown, and higher labor costs.

The prediction of the report is based on an in-depth analysis of survey responses from more than 500 chief executive officers and senior leaders at manufacturing companies throughout the world.

CEOs say that advanced manufacturing technologies are a key to unlocking future competitiveness. Predictive analytics, the network connectivity of common objects known as the "Internet of Things", smart products, and smart factories that help define "Industry 4.0", and advanced materials are viewed by executives as crucial to global manufacturing competitiveness.

"In China, the State Council is also aware of the challenges for manufacturing industry and has put forward measures dedicated to the ‘Made in China 2025' and 'Internet Plus' initiatives, which seek to help China move up the value chain," said Ricky Tung, Deloitte China Industrial Products and Services Managing Partner.

"Current policies focus on providing capital for technology development, sustainability and infrastructure development, pivotal for support Chinese companies to develop their own competitive edges."

For Zhang Tianbing, Deloitte China Industrial Products and Services Consulting Partner, China has put priorities in 'High Performance Computing', which is one of the most promising advanced manufacturing technologies along with predictive analytics and Smart Factories. In some areas, China surpasses the United States, for example the development of the world's fastest supercomputer, Tianhe-2 (Milky Way 210).

"Research and development spending along with the supply of science, technology, engineering and mathematics graduates will determine China's success in developing its own innovation ecosystem. It will also depend on how well China can focus on technology commercialization and how effective it can help manufacturing companies attract venture capital investments," said Zhang.

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