Two measures commonly used by the government to measure manufacturing's overall impact on society are badly underestimating the impact of that critical sector. One is the proportion of gross domestic product for which manufacturing accounts. The other is the "multiplier effect," which measures the impact on other industries from an increase in economic activity by a specific industry.
In a landmark decision on data protection, the European Court of Justice's decision in Schrems v. Data Protection Commissioner last month struck down the agreement companies have relied on for 15 years to legally transfer the personal information of EU employees and customers back to the United States.
The picture for Cuban manufacturing is mixed. On the positive side, the government’s decision to give private firms more autonomy to retain earnings and make investment decisions may spur a much-needed market for capital equipment, a crucial source of demand for a developing economy factory sector.
A few years ago, the OECD embarked on a multiyear effort to create an international tax framework that closes perceived gaps in international tax rules. This includes combating base erosion and profit shifting (BEPS) to ensure companies pay their "fair share" of taxes. Many of the BEPS Project's action items are expected to be finalized later this year.
The MAPI Foundation's manufacturing production index for Latin America is expected to decline 0.9 percent in 2015, although this regional picture masks sizable differences across countries. The deeper than expected recession in Brazil, for instance, is offsetting the solid performance of Mexican factories. Argentina's manufacturers are also in recession, but it is milder than Brazil's.
The United States holds the unenviable position of having a higher statutory corporate tax rate than any of our major trading partners - and all OECD countries. Among 135 nations, the U.S. rate is exceeded only by the United Arab Emirates.
China became the largest manufacturing economy in the world (with a 23.2 percent share of manufacturing activity) through extremely fast growth in the physical volume of value-added and modest inflation. The U.S. is in second place with a 17.2 percent share. China has more than four times the population of the United States, and though its manufacturing intensity of $1,978 per capita value-added in 2013 is high for a developing economy, it is well behind advanced countries such as the United States ($6,338).