The Necessity of Reshoring

Lawndale News Chicago's Bilingual Newspaper - Commentary

by Daniel Nardini

A new word has come into the English language, and it is known as “reshoring.” What exactly is reshoring? Almost all of us know what outsourcing is. “Outsourcing” is the taking of American jobs, investments and even whole factory facilities and putting them in other countries—preferably to Third World countries where the labor is dirt cheap, the workers compliant, and the profits great. To put it mildly, this has greatly upset American workers who have seen their jobs disappear within the last 20 or so years. This has led to high unemployment and high under-employment, and worse less and less Americans making good wages for their labor.

Reshoring is the process of bringing jobs back to the United States and employing Americans. This process, while still small, is becoming more popular among some international corporate businesses and especially among medium-size companies who had taken their investments to other countries previously. While many of them may have benefited from the low wage labor and the cheap shipping costs, these advantages are beginning to disappear. A growing number of companies are discovering that cheap labor does not equal quality work. This has been one of the reasons why products made in many Third World countries leave much to be desired in terms of quality (not to mention the number of recalls and lawsuits filed against companies for putting dangerous products on the shelves in America).

Two other reasons why some companies are reshoring is because the shipping costs are beginning to cost a larger sum of money. Once upon a time it was cheaper to ship from overseas than from one part of the U.S. to another. This trend has reversed, and the lower costs of shipping from part of the U.S. to the next means that products made in USA can get to their destinations more cheaply and more quickly. Another important reason why some companies are reshoring is because they do not want to be held hostage to arbitrary decisions by government officials in foreign countries. In many Third World countries this trend has become more prevalent, and it is hurting those businesses trying to have their products made overseas.

Some companies are beginning to see that America’s political stability and its efficient workforce off-sets the costs. Will the reshoring trend continue and grow? It remains to be seen if this trend will be a real trend. At least it means that there may be hope for the American worker and hope that “Made in USA” is not just some pipe dream.

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