Society

More US Factory Jobs Headed To Mexico

| by Lauren Briggs

A number of U.S. companies will soon move their jobs to Mexico as they struggle to keep up with manufacturing costs.

Triumph Group Inc., a company based in Spokane, Washington, that builds fiber-composite parts for Boeing; Illinois Tool Works Inc., a plant that produces car parts; and TE Connectivity Ltd., a pressure-sensor plant in Pennsauken, New Jersey, will all lay off a large number of U.S. workers as they move either some or all of their production to various parts of Mexico. In Mexico, average wages are four times lower than those in the U.S., reports Bloomberg.

Triumph Group has let go of nearly 80 production workers and intends to lay off 30 more workers by August 2017, as it downsizes its plant and moves a sizeable amount of its production to Zacatecas and Baja California. Illinois Tool Works will shutter its Mazon, Illinois, plant and move it to Ciudad Juarez, while TE Connectivity Ltd. is closing its entire plant to move to Hermosillo.

Tecma Group's CEO Alan Russell, whose Texas company helps relocate factories to Mexico, said the moves are about "saving companies" rather than "taking jobs from the U.S." According to Russell, Asian countries rely on Vietnam, and European ones rely on the Czech Republic for cheap labor the way that the U.S. relies on Mexico.

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President Donald Trump and the Republican-dominated Congress have vowed to stop the exodus of production jobs from the U.S. -- the House of Representatives has introduced a bill to add a 20 percent border adjustment tax on imported goods in an effort to reduce the U.S. trade deficit.

Meanwhile, Trump has promised to renegotiate the North American Free Trade Agreement and create 25 million new jobs during his presidency, which would be more than any of his predecessors have ever added, notes CNN Money.

"We will bring back our jobs," the president said at his January inauguration, reports CNN Money. "We will bring back our borders. We will bring back our wealth, and we will bring back our dreams."

In particular, the president has said he will focus on creating and saving factory jobs, an industry that has not seen much growth since the recession. Since 2000, the U.S. has lost 5 million manufacturing jobs, while there have been only 822,000 of them added to the U.S. economy since February 2010, reports The New York Times.

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"Rusted out factories are scattered like tombstones across the landscape of our nation," Trump said, according to CNN. "The wealth of our middle class has been ripped from our homes and redistributed all across the world."

Sources: Bloomberg, CNN Money, The New York Times / Photo credit: David Dixon/Geograph

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