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2013 Global Manufacturing Competitiveness Index

2013 Global Manufacturing Competitiveness Index

Background

Over the next five years, 20th-century manufacturing stalwarts like the United States, Germany and Japan will be challenged to maintain their competitive edge to emerging nations such as China, India and Brazil, according to the 2013 Global Manufacturing Competitiveness Index report from Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu Limited’s (DTTL) Global Manufacturing Industry group and the U.S. Council on Competitiveness.

The report confirms that the landscape for competitive manufacturing is in the midst of a massive power shift - based on an in-depth analysis of survey responses from more than 550 chief executive officers (CEOs) and senior leaders at manufacturing companies around the world. This shift will clearly impact the UK, as it is predicted to drop from the 15th most competitive nation today, to 19th position in five years’ time. This slide in competitiveness holds true for several other European nations, including France, Italy, Belgium, the Netherlands, Portugal, Poland and the Czech Republic, which are all expected to experience a dramatic decrease in their ability to compete.

The 2013 Global Manufacturing Competitiveness Index once again ranks China as the most competitive manufacturing nation in the world both today, and five years from now. Germany and the United States round out the top three competitive manufacturing nations, but, according to the survey, both fall five years from now.

The report found that access to talented workers is the top indicator of a country’s competitiveness - followed by a country’s trade, financial and tax system, and then the cost of labour and materials. Enhancing and growing an effective talent base remains core to competitiveness among the traditional manufacturing leaders - and increasingly among emerging market challengers as well.

David Raistrick, Deloitte UK Manufacturing leader commented: “Manufacturing still matters a great deal for the economic prosperity of 20th century powerhouses – and these nations continue to have enough going for them to stay in the game and even thrive. In particular, the UK has intrinsic strengths to build on. We should not forget that the UK is an open, trading economy with a flexible labour market and an attractive investment location for global companies. The UK has a world-class research base with more top-ranking universities than any country except the USA. All of this leads one to believe that the UK has the potential to remain in its current position on the Index, or even move up a few ranks, if these and other strengths are harnessed. It will mean more successful British companies can compete in global markets, develop innovative products and services, and so create new jobs and rising prosperity.”

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