Tags: Economic- Crisis | Editor's Pick | Evans-Pritchard | US | economy | rebound

British Writer: America Will Rebound in Five Years

Monday, 24 Oct 2011 03:24 PM

By Martin Gould

The decline of the United States as a world economic powerhouse is about to come to an end, according to one of Britain’s leading commentators.

Ambrose Evans-Pritchard, international business editor for the Daily Telegraph, claims that within five years the pendulum will swing back as the nation becomes more energy self-sufficient and Chinese labor becomes more expensive.

“Assumptions that the Great Republic must inevitably spiral into economic and strategic decline…will seem wildly off the mark by then,” he wrote.

Evans-Pritchard says there is a rush to “repatriate” manufacturing plants to the United States from China and elsewhere and says the Boston Consulting Group predicts 800,000 manufacturing jobs will return by the middle of the decade, leading directly to more than 3 million new jobs.

“Farouk Systems is bringing back assembly of hair dryers to Texas after counterfeiting problems; ET Water Systems has switched its irrigation products to California; Master Lock is returning to Milwaukee and NCR is bring back its ATM output to Georgia,” he writes. “NatLabs is coming home to Florida.

“Volkswagen is investing $4 billion in America, led by its Chattanooga Passat plant. Korea’s Samsung has begun a $20 billion US investment blitz. Meanwhile, Intel, GM, Caterpillar and other U.S. firms are opting to stay home rather than invest abroad.”

Evans-Pritchard says America now meets 72 percent of its oil needs, up from 50 percent a decade ago, and as shale fields in North Dakota, Texas and parts of the Mid-West are developed, total output could rise to 5.5 million barrels per day by mid-decade. “This is a tenfold rise since 2009,” he says.

Evans-Pritchard points out that the switch in world power is relative. “It does not imply a healthy U.S. recovery,” he says. “The global depression will grind on as much of the Western world tightens fiscal policy and slowly purges debt.”

But he says the U.S. has many factors in its favor, including 16 of the world’s top 20 universities, and it is one of the few countries with a fertility rate higher than 2.0 “in sharp contrast to the demographic decay awaiting Japan, China, Korea, Germany, Italy and Russia.

“Europe’s EMU soap opera has shown why it matters that America is a genuine nation forged by shared language and the ancestral chords of memory over two centuries, with institutions that ultimately work and a real central bank able to back-stop the system,” Evans-Pritchard writes.

“The 21st Century may be American after all, just like the last.”

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