Reshoring on Track to Hit Record Highs in 2021
If present trends hold, we may be in for a boom era of U.S. manufacturing reshoring. The latest report from the Reshoring Initiative projected the U.S. is on track to add a total of 224,213 jobs from abroad in 2021, 38% more than the 161,000 added in 2020 due to reshoring and foreign direct investment (FDI). The Initiative, which publishes semiannual reports on manufacturing jobs returning to the U.S. from other countries, also predicted that 2021 would see more jobs created due to reshoring than federal direct investment for a second year in a row.
According to the data, reshoring is on track to make up 62% of such jobs this year—a smaller percentage than last year, when seven out of ten such jobs were reshored, but a sizeable increase in absolute terms.
Essential products investment is helping drive this year’s gains, the Initiative said, including increased funding for domestic semiconductors, electric vehicle batteries and pharmaceuticals. Those products—in addition to PPE and rare earth metals—represent collectively about 28% of returning jobs. As was the case in 2020 and 2019, the transportation equipment industry is expected to rehome more jobs than any other sector, but the chemicals and electronics sectors are catching up.
Transportation equipment is forecast to add 54,961 reshored or foreign-investment-created jobs this year, or 25% of all such jobs. That notably includes electric vehicle battery production.
Chemical companies are expected to add 37,233 jobs or 17% of new jobs from abroad.
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