From the Chairman John Lucey

Lucey, John
February 2004
Management Services;Feb2004, Vol. 48 Issue 2, p32
Academic Journal
This article discusses the quest of companies for higher productivity, as of February 2004. The quest for productivity continues but it seems that all the pressure is on manufacturing. Recent statistics reveal some worrying trends that threaten the ability of Great Britain to compete in the 21st century global economy. What is worrying about present employment trends is the decline in financial and business services. If this continues, it will have a major, knock-on effect for the entire economy. The major force behind this is the technology revolution. It is easier for companies to shift their back-office data management activities to low-cost centres. Some jobs cannot be moved offshore. Today, China is an even greater challenge. It produces 86% of the bicycles sold in Europe and the U.S. But like India, China is moving up the value chain, producing more sophisticated goods for its domestic and export markets. There are 450 million people working in China's expanding manufacturing sector and another 850 million waiting to join. By 2030, China will account for about 25% of world trade, while Europe's share will have fallen to about 12 percent. Meanwhile, research suggests that the main driver of productivity is external restructuring.


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