In what might be the most fascinating labor development to come out of China this year, major ODMs are relocating workers west due to labor shortages.
One major reason companies in Shenzhen packed up their factories and moved inland (with the government’s blessing) was to chase a larger supply of lower-cost workers. Shenzhen had become too expensive, and migrants from the western farms were no longer so eager to move to the Southeast coast to take jobs. The diaspora was supposed to resolve both
But today the news out of China is much different. Quanta Computer and Compal Electronics reportedly have moved employees from east to west to support factories in Chongqing City, a municipality with a population of more than 28 million (!), due to short labor supplies.
Even in a country of 1.3 billion people, cheap, effective workers apparently are hard to come by.