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Supplier Network

2013 Global Manufacturing Competitiveness Index


Executives responding to the 2013 GMCI survey ranked supplier network as the fourth most important driver of manufacturing competitiveness. CEOs gave much more importance to supplier networks than in 2010, when, supplier network ranked eighth.

This improvement may be attributed to a number of factors, including the increasing globalization of manufacturing organizations and supply chains and intensifying efforts to localize production near emerging consumer markets. The sheer scale of today’s global supply networks is staggering. In addition, CEOs and senior executives have elevated the standing of supply chains as they are taking strategic actions to mitigate supply chain risks in response to natural disasters and to gain more control and transparency of sources. In evaluating a country’s competitive advantage in this area, executives cited financial stability and resources within a supplier network as the most important factor contributing to competitiveness, followed closely by its ability to innovate, cost competitiveness, and suppliers’ availability and responsiveness. 

The old adage, “getting the right products to the right markets at the right time in the right amounts at the right cost” translates into efficient and effective supply chain management.

It’s not surprising that the developed nations — and China — rank as the leaders. Certainly, key contributors to this ranking are the long manufacturing tradition that the developed countries enjoy and the traditional role each has played in driving innovation and creating a high quality supplier ecosystem. Furthermore, it should be of no surprise that China is also recognized by executives surveyed as a leader in providing a competitive advantage through its supplier network.

China, with its focused efforts to localize supply chains and create innovation hubs, is seen by CEOs as the only emerging nation offering the same suppliers network advantages as developed nations.

Among the emerging economies, China has an overwhelming lead over India and Brazil. China’s emergence as a leader in supplier networks is likely attributed to focused efforts within the country to localize supply chains; and thereby, creating innovation hubs that bring together universities, research institutions and suppliers. Access to a well-oiled supplier network makes large multinationals successful in the production and continued advancement of complex goods to meet the needs of global customers.

2013 Global Manufacturing Competitiveness Index

Main page: Return to the 2013 Index overview
Continue reading: Country analyses, appendix A

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