An expanding manufacturing sector has been the backbone of economic takeoff everywhere since the industrial revolution. However, prior to World War 2, the production and consumption of manufactured products were bundled together in close geographic proximity due to the costs and convenience of limited transportation and a rudimentary logistics sector.

After World War 2, dramatically improved efficiency in logistics, later to be supercharged by the IT revolution, enabled companies to rapidly globalise their production — choosing locations where they could combine their proprietary know-how with cheap local wages, and ship the products to new markets across the globe.

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