Written by Joe Boomgaard
A new Brookings Institution
report on the future of Tennessee’s automotive industry might make for
some interesting reading for West Michigan supplier companies.
At the very least, it will make them feel wanted.
After luring auto assembly jobs south over the past couple of
decades, the Volunteer State is discovering that cheap labor, attractive
incentives and a business-friendly environment won’t be enough to stay
competitive long term, the report noted. Assembly jobs have continued to
move south, specifically to Mexico where there’s been more than $3.5
billion invested in automotive plants in recent years.
So Tennessee and its southern neighbors have looked north again and
are setting their sights on the automotive supply chain, according to
“They want to get what we have,” said economic developer Randy Thelen, president of Zeeland-based Lakeshore Advantage.
In particular, southern states are eyeing the engineering, technology
and design assets that Michigan-based automotive supplier companies have
built up over the past century. More here.