World news: July 2012
Motor controls production shifts to even cheaper regions
Manufacturers of motor controls are increasingly moving production to lower-cost regions to meet the growing demand for these systems in countries such as China, Brazil, and Eastern Europe, according to the market analyst IMS Research. For example, production is already shifting from Poland to other Eastern European nations, and in China, suppliers are locating facilities in remote areas of Western China or near Mongolia.
As suppliers try to maintain local presence while keeping labour costs down, IMS expects manufacturing facilities to migrate to lower-cost parts of Southeast Asia and India over the coming decade.
“As these emerging economies become more developed and labour costs in the countries rise, shifts towards other developing regions are inevitable as suppliers look to take advantage of the benefits an emerging market offers,” says IMS analyst John Kendall.
China remains the fastest-growing regional market for motor controls. Many manufacturers have already moved some of their production to the country, and will continue to do so. This trend is being accelerated by the restrictive tax policies and import duties that suppliers face in China.
IMS expects the Asia-Pacific region, excluding Japan, to increase its share of global motor controls production from 41% in 2010, to 49% by 2015.
In 2010, Asia-Pacific overtook Europe to become the world’s largest market for motor controls. But demand is still growing across Europe, so many motor controls suppliers are seeking additional manufacturing capacity in Europe, according to IMS.
Eastern Europe and, in particular, Poland and Romania, have benefited from the localisation trend as suppliers set up new facilities to meet European demand for motor controls. The cost of labour in Eastern Europe and its closeness to some of the largest machine-producing countries, such as Germany and Italy, is attractive to many suppliers.
Although few suppliers currently manufacture motor controls in Brazil, many are expanding production facilities in the region, IMS reports. This trend is being fuelled by import duties of 14% on all factory automation products and by minimum production requirements for local projects.