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Dale continues his excellent Foo Camp video chats, here talking with Liam Casey, whose company acts as an interface between US (mainly tech) companies and the Chinese manufacturing sector. In the O’Reilly Radar piece from which this video is taken, Dale explains:

At Foo Camp 2010, I caught up with Liam Casey of PCH International, an Irishman living in China who runs a supply-chain business, helping mostly American tech companies manufacture things in China. Casey offers his insight into why China has become the place to make things. China has the infrastructure, the expertise and the labor force to be the world’s leader in manufacturing.

Casey’s view is that manufacturing has become a commodity; fewer large companies own their own factories. In a sense, they rent rather than own, and the cheapest places to rent are those in China. As China begins to create web interfaces to its manufacturing capacity, the rest of the world will find it even easier to make things in China.

Read both the article and watch the video to get a better picture of some of the complex issues that are being raised here.

The Manufacturing Future: Can the United States become more competitive as a maker of things?

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Gareth Branwyn

Gareth Branwyn is a freelancer writer and the former Editorial Director of Maker Media. He is the author or editor of a dozen books on technology, DIY, and geek culture, including the first book about the web (Mosaic Quick Tour) and the Absolute Beginner’s Guide to Building Robots. He is currently working on a best-of collection of his writing, called Borg Like Me.


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Comments

  1. mrmeval says:

    It cost us nothing to get it assembled. Even with the substitution of our good parts for bad ones, customs bribes, factory bribes and other corrupt government officials we were doing ok with 30 percent failure rate on receipt.

    What killed China as an option? Shipping.

    What clinched it? Cheap surplus SMT equipment. Local board makers who are cheaper and more reliable than China and strong infrastructure that has allowed us to get all of the support products at good prices. Excellent support from local semiconductor vendors.

    Net result? We are saving between 40 and 60 percent on completed assemblies.

    Bonus? We don’t poison babies, children or the old. We keep our money here. We hire local and spend local.

  2. Lauren Kuhlman says:

    Thanks for providing this guys. I was considering contacting PCH based on some other references to their quality but seeing the CEO chatting with MAKE seals it. I just hope they’ll work with me. MAKE, you are my life’s easy button.