This city on China’s Pearl River Delta was once a manufacturing boomtown, a place that made so many different things, from toys to shoes to furniture, that it became known as “the world’s factory.” Migrant workers came from all corners of the country to work here, often taking jobs that used to be in the United States. But these days, it’s Dongguan that’s losing jobs and eyeing the United States with some envy.
“China has to change its manufacturing strategy to be more innovative in technology and compete with a ‘reviving’ U.S.,” wrote Zhang, the researcher, this summer in an op-ed for the China Daily titled “Wake-Up Call for Industry.” “China is expected to face fiercer-than-ever competition from the United States in the manufacturing sector, making it all the more urgent for Beijing to expedite its industrial upgrade.”
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