Reshoring trend could benefit Ireland

Conference hears wage increases in China have led companies to rethink location of manufacturing

Caroline Dowling, president of integrated network solutions at Flextronics, said now was an ideal time for Ireland to harness the opportunity that reshoring presents.

Caroline Dowling, president of integrated network solutions at Flextronics, said now was an ideal time for Ireland to harness the opportunity that reshoring presents.

Wed, May 22, 2013, 11:30

Ireland could benefit from the significant increase in wages in China as a growing number of companies rethink the location of their manufacturing operations, a conference in Cork has heard.

Addressing the Cork Electronics Industry Association, Caroline Dowling, president of integrated network solutions at Flextronics, said now was an ideal time for Ireland to harness the opportunity that reshoring presents.

The conference heard that hourly wages in China have increased by more than 400 per cent since 2001, and coupled with the time difference and an average shipping time of six weeks, the attractiveness of manufacturing in the East may diminish for some sectors.

“Cost efficiency and competitiveness is vital in this industry, but adding value through innovation and value chain improvement is also critical, and herein lies the opportunity for manufacturing in Ireland,” Ms Dowling said.

As the design and manufacturing process becomes more sophisticated, customisation and final configuration closer to the market is desirable and often necessary, she added.