Some Chinese factories moved inland in hopes of securing cheaper and more readily available land, as well as lower labor costs. Caixin reports on the impact of “industrial migration”:
Inland cities and regions are giving manufacturers alternatives to the nation’s 30-year-old manufacturing network of coastal factories, including huge assembly plants staffed by migrant workers. Thousands of inland projects have been completed or are under way.
Hubei Province, for example, launched some 2,332 projects in 2009 involving industries that left coastal regions. The combined value of these deals reached 112 billion yuan.
Still, it remains to be seen whether industrial migration is right for everyone. Companies hoping to find labor cost advantages by moving inland may be disappointed. And questions have been raised about the availability of land for new factories as well as environmental, government policy and competition issues.