US manufacturing faces possible pitfalls and severe declines, says report

U.S.-manufacturing flags
Picture credit: LeHighValley.com via GlobalTradeMag.com

The US manufacturing sector faces numerous possible pitfalls and some risk of severe declines, according to a new report by Creditsafe USA.

The in-depth analysis of the US manufacturing industry says that, despite recent overall consistent performance, there are “several areas of concern” across the entire sector. In particular, the rate of bankruptcy signaling the possibility of an industry slowdown.

With the manufacturing industry being the largest area of employment in the US, any decline could have a “catastrophic effect” on the overall US economy, says Creditsafe.  Continue reading US manufacturing faces possible pitfalls and severe declines, says report

Finding a third way forward for China’s economy

chinese wall

By Edward Tse, CEO of Gao Feng 

China’s fast economic growth, its gradual but consistent transition from a planned economy toward a market economy, the emergence of highly intensive competition in the open sectors, the increasing prevalence of technology and the availability of angel investing and venture capital funds all contributed to the emergence of waves of entrepreneurship and innovation in China that the country had not seen before. 

In their search for growth strategies, these Chinese entrepreneurs were typically fast and agile. Some of them developed diversified conglomerates, and there were others that decided on a narrow focus, taking the core competence approach.

The results have been mixed. Interestingly, some of them, through trial and error, discovered a third way of strategy development. We call it “multiple jumping”.  Continue reading Finding a third way forward for China’s economy

Is industry ready for the circular economy?

circular economy

EU Automation releases circular economy industry guide 

Obsolete industrial parts supplier, EU Automation has published an industry guide for manufacturers interested in making their production method more sustainable by contributing to the circular economy.

The guide can be downloaded, free of charge, from EU Automation’s website, under the Industry Guides section.

The circular economy focuses on keeping resources at their highest utility and value at all times. As well as minimising waste and energy losses, it also improves the environmental impact of manufacturing and reduces the risk of obsolescence.  Continue reading Is industry ready for the circular economy?

Siemens to invest $133 million in Canadian operations

siemens and seneca college canada
Last year, Seneca College and Siemens Canada opened what they said was Ontario’s first Mechatronics Simulation and Demonstration Centre

Siemens plans to invest $110.6 million in research and development activities at its plant in Dorval, Canada to design and make improvements to aero-derivative gas turbines.

These turbines are used for, among other things, the production of electricity, and serve as a backup source in the event that the existing network is unable to meet the demand.

The engineering company also plans to invest $22 million to launch a platform of expertise related to Industry 4.0 and the implementation of a training system integrated into the workplace.  Continue reading Siemens to invest $133 million in Canadian operations

Obama warns of divisiveness of automation technology

obama farewell
US President Barack Obama making his farewell speech. Image: White House

In his farewell address to the nation, US President Barack Obama warned of the dangers of automation technology. 

Obama said: “The next wave of economic dislocations won’t come from overseas. It will come from the relentless pace of automation that makes a lot of good, middle-class jobs obsolete.”

The Obama administration has been looking the whole issue of robotics, automation and artificial intelligence, and consulting on the possible impact of those technologies on the US economy.  Continue reading Obama warns of divisiveness of automation technology

‘Believe it or not, automation may bring jobs back to the US’

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One of the major concerns among blue collar workers is the fear that robotic automation will take jobs that are sorely needed by the average working Joe who simply wants to provide for his or her family.

While it is understandable to think this way since automation can do the work in less time and with more efficiency, it may not necessarily be true that automation is going to replace human jobs.

A study emanating from the UK’s prestigious Oxford University indicates that automation may actually be a very good thing in that it will not only bring factories back home, but it will stimulate the economy, creating more jobs in the process.  Continue reading ‘Believe it or not, automation may bring jobs back to the US’

Investment in manufacturing robotics could boost British economy by £60bn within a decade, says Barclays

manufacturing in the uk

Investing an additional £1.2bn into manufacturing processes, to increase robotics and automation over the next decade, could add as much as £60.5bn to the UK economy over the next decade, forecasts new research from Barclays. This is equivalent to nearly two fifths of the manufacturing sector’s value to the economy today.

The “Future-proofing UK manufacturing” report reveals that investing in automation technology will help to increase the international competitiveness of the UK’s manufacturing sector through increased manufacturing productivity and efficiency. As a result of additional investment, the manufacturing sector will be worth £191bn in 2025, £8.6bn more than currently projected and a 19.6% increase on today.

Furthermore, increased investment in automation will help to soften the expected long-term decline in manufacturing sector jobs by safeguarding 73,500 additional workers in 2025, due to the creation of a larger, more productive and competitive UK manufacturing sector. Continue reading Investment in manufacturing robotics could boost British economy by £60bn within a decade, says Barclays