Robots may cut off path to prosperity in developing world

“There is a gloomy view you hear in the developed world that goes something like this: First the factories went overseas, now the robots are coming for the jobs that are left. In other words, automation will sweep up the crumbs that globalisation left behind … But the relationship between globalisation and automation is more interesting than that. Rich countries are beginning to see factories return to their shores — and they have the robots to thank. …
Mr Tyler Cowen, an economics professor at George Mason University in the US, believes robots and 3D printers could create a world of “radical insourcing” where developed countries no longer need to outsource production to countries where wages are low.

“Why should a wealthy nation buy from a poorer exporter when it can automate and produce similar goods at home without incurring high labour costs?” he asked in a recent paper.”



Tan E Guang Eugene (Mr.)

Associate Research Fellow

Centre of Excellence for National Security (CENS)