David Thompson Posted:
So very, very true. It beggars belief that we consider ourselves to be a developed nation when so much of our economy is based on selling milk powder or logs. BTW, I own a Plinius amplifier (my second) that drives a set of Theophany speakers.
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David Thompson Posted:
A robust but sobering report. It concerns me that confidence is rising, yet sales and exports are down and "manufacturers and exporters are still lagging behind other sectors". Surely we should wait until we're earning more money before we start spending more?
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siemens Posted:
Yes true! The only thing that will never die in this world is the nature and its science behind it. Great post.
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Kieran Ormandy Posted:
Thanks for the question Steven, Germany has seen increases in manufacturing employment since 2009, and Switzerland has had stable manufacturing employment between 2006 – 2011, even in the face of ongoing Euro-zone issues. Korea has seen increases in manufacturing employment since 2008 and Israel experienced large increases since 1998, while being stable over the last 4 years. Singapore has had increases in manufacturing employment over the last two years. These countries all value their manufacturing sectors and work to protect them, this is reflected in the above numbers and their performance through the GFC. Note data around the above examples was sourced from OECD labour market stats.
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John Walley Posted:
Point one: you should have no doubt what our Association says publically represent the views of our members. Point two: we don’t knee jerk responses, if you trace back our comments around NZPower you will see them link all the way back to our research in 2004 and 2005. All that material is fully linked from our comments above. Point three: you will note our comments on major users, sadly the same advantage does not accrue to smaller industrial users. The perverse incentives of the LRMC approach in all this are well known. Point four: the NZMEA is not like any other Association in New Zealand we admit only manufacturers and exporters into membership, and our public expressions are the views of that restricted membership.
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Is New Zealand ready for the next global revolution in manufacturing - Industry 4.0?

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Networked manufacturing, otherwise known as Industry 4.0, is the next revolution in manufacturing, offering higher productivity and more adaptable and intelligent systems.

The New Zealand Manufacturers and Exporters Association (NZMEA), in association with Callaghan Innovation, welcomed a leading expert in the field, Dr Frank Wagner, to share his insights and observations on Industry 4.0 in Christchurch and Auckland this week. Manufacturers attending will hear how this technology is being used in Germany and Australia, and how New Zealand manufacturers can harness digitisation, say the NZMEA.

“Industry 4.0, or networked manufacturing, involves the digitisation of industrial supply chains, using automation and advanced computing and big data to connect all parts of production and supply, allowing real-time analysis and management of systems, with intelligent integration of people, machines and products.” says Dr Frank Wagner, Professor, Queensland University of Technology.

NZMEA Chief Executive Dieter Adam says, “Global interest in Industry 4.0 is gaining traction fast, and it is changing how many manufacturers worldwide operate.

“It is allowing manufacturers to better understand and optimise their systems and supply chains, adapt to customer needs through increased customisation within production lines and efficiently combine automation with skilled workers.

“Networked manufacturing is opening up new business models as well as continuing the trend of combining advanced manufactured products with new service solutions. It also carries the potential for dramatic productivity increases in short-run manufacturing, which is more and more becoming the home base of New Zealand manufacturing.”

“Given that perspective, being leading adopters of this technology and the thinking behind it is really the only way to go for our manufacturers if they want to remain globally competitive.

“It is also vital that government is aware and stays ahead of these changes with any policy response to help Kiwi manufacturers adapt, innovate and invest in the R&D needed to compete.

“We greatly appreciate the support of Callaghan Innovation to make these presentations and interactive workshops for manufacturers possible,” says Mr Adam.

“Finally – the question that comes with every new technology is “will it destroy jobs?” One of the aims of networked manufacturing is to remove unnecessary steps in manufacturing processes. That can result in higher output with the same number of people. It can also empower businesses to employ more people, due to increased productivity over the competition and ability to offer new products and services to customers. That is certainly what we see in the leading adopters of this technology in Germany.

“History shows that being leading adopters is the best approach to preserving and growing jobs and the output of the manufacturing sector.” says Mr Adam. 

tags: frank wagner, industry 4.0, manufacturing, digital, networked, networked manufacturing


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