Chinese entrepreneur Liu Keli, who runs a company making copper cylinders for printing presses, decided to open a factory in South Carolina. He was motivated by a desire to improve his position in the U.S. market, and was surprised to find that substantial cost savings were also possible on some important aspects of his business. Specifically: electricity costs are 75% cheaper, and continuity of service is much better. Mr Liu also got 7 acres of land near Spartanburg for one fourth of what it would have cost him in Dongguan, a city in southeast China where he operates three plants.
Labor is, of course, significantly more expensive: about six times as much on a per-hour basis. But with the benefits from reduced power and land costs, and a $1500/employee tax credit from South Carolina, the overall cost picture is closer to that in China than he would have previously imagined.
I’m also kind of surprised by these wide differences in land and electricity costs.
(via Carpe Diem)