11-11-2020 – Expert says pandemic will bring some jobs back to U.S.

Posted on: November 12th, 2020 by admin

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November 10, 2020

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BY GUY LUCAS

GUYLUCAS@NEWSTOPICNEWS.COM

 

The way the COVID-19 pandemic has disrupted the world economy offers opportunities for North Carolina to gain jobs, a prominent economic development consultant says.

 

And among the industries that he said can be expected to grow the most are some that have a significant presence in Caldwell County.

 

The shutdowns in the spring stemming from the pandemic exposed vulnerabilities in many industries’ supply chains, which were built purely for efficiency and cost-effectiveness, Ted Abernathy of Economic Leadership LLC recently told the fall conference of the N.C. Economic Development Association, a group made up of more than 700 people who work in economic development and related fields. The Caldwell County Economic Development Commission’s board of directors reviewed a recording of Abernathy’s presentation on Tuesday.

 

Abernathy said that industries will move toward having shorter supply chains, with more jobs based in the U.S., and also redundant supply chains so that interruptions are less likely to severely disrupt production.

 

Industries seeing the most job growth before the pandemic can be expected to see continued growth, he said. The important change will be where that job growth takes place.

 

The changes being driven by COVID-19 are “a disruption, not a transformation,” he said.

 

Among the industries Abernathy cited as opportunities for U.S. job growth were biomedical, pharmaceutical, plastics and food processing, all of which have been areas of strong job growth in Caldwell County in recent years, noted Deborah Murray, the executive director of the Caldwell EDC.

 

“This is incredibly encouraging,” she said. “We are well positioned to have what I call a durable economy for the future.”

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