Whitepaper: Reshoring trend

3 June 2021

Manufacturing companies benefit from the reshoring trend with robotisation. New opportunities for Western industry in the post-COVID-19 era.

The COVID-19 pandemic has been the trigger for many OEMs and large manufacturing companies to rethink their often-complex supply chains. When China stopped production in early 2020, followed by other countries, manufacturers in Western Europe and the United States were forced to close their factories due to lack of parts. Trading companies were no longer able to replenish their stocks. The blockade of the Suez Canal by the container ship Ever Given showed in a different way how vulnerable world trade has become after decades of globalization. One wrong manoeuvre by a container ship puts a significant part of world trade on hold.

Do companies still want to be dependent on distant supply lines from low-wage countries? In the coming years, climate policy will ensure that this question remains at the top of the agenda. Transparency regarding the real costs of outsourcing in the Far East will lead to shifts in global supply chains. The playing field for the manufacturing industry is changing. Work will come back from low-wage countries. This creates opportunities for local manufacturing companies, provided they can respond flexibly to market demand and keep their overhead costs low. Automation and digitization are the solution for this. They allow machining companies to seize the opportunities that will come in the post-COVID-19 era.

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