It seems as though everyone is complaining that China has all our manufacturing (zhìzàoyè 制造业) jobs these days, that all these “wonderful” jobs could be brought back to us. This simply isn’t true. All the important manufacturing jobs like engineering and welding (please read these two sources to learn more: market research and employment increase) still remain in the US and in the West, in general. The truth is that we are giving all the jobs we really don’t want to foreign countries like China. With the high emphasis on the service industry in the developed nations, I have a hard time believing the masses in the West would be willing to slave away in a sweat shop.
The real issue is that we give almost all of these textile and low-level manufacturing jobs exclusively to China. that means a lot of capital is being handed over directly to the Chinese. For some odd reason, it is almost like we think that it is only the Chinese that is capable of these jobs or that it is only economically feasible to pay the Chinese. What we really need to start doing is giving these jobs to other countries, like the Philippines and Indonesia. It is a plausible solution, since hundreds of thousands of Southeast Asian people migrate to places like Hong Kong to land very low wage and unstable work in often unsuitable working conditions:
Although these domestic helpers are given a place to sleep and food to eat, they are typically only payed about US$500 a month. As an alternative to this kind of work, I think they may find working in a factory closer to home for comparable wages as a feasible alternative.
To provide these nations with the opportunity to work in the manufacturing industry would lift their living conditions and would prevent China from receiving all the capital. I’m not saying it is bad that the developed world pour all their money into the Chinese economy, but it isn’t really a good thing to put all eggs into one basket, especially since ties between the West and China haven’t exactly been the best these days.
I want to finish by saying that I am not really a fan of the way the developed world puts its demands upon the developing nations, forcing these people to go underpaid and essentially slaving away, performing menial tasks day-in and day-out. This can be further extended by saying that those that are rich–from any nation–has the privilege to practically bath in money while others may be working twelve-hour shifts manufacturing things like Christmas ornaments, breathing in toxic chemicals the entire time, just to feed their families and pay the bills.
The world order under capitalism may be considered as being cruel, but at least it does provide a means for the developing countries; if the citizens of these nations are creative enough to find a niche for their economy, these countries can dominate a market, providing a opportunity for that nation to make progress. An example of this being China and its manufacturing base or Argentina with its wines. In the case of the low-level manufacturing industry, it might be about time to start sharing the jobs with even less developed countries than China.