Made in China & Finland

In recession-fearing Finland, last week’s order received by the STX Rauma shipyard was good news. At the same time the order says much about the globalised market.
     
There is something downright wistful about it: the future of the Finnish shipbuilding industry is in the small market of high-level know-how, not like it was in years past in the market for massive cruise liners that employ armies of shipyard workers.
     
What is extraordinary in the order is that the steel hulls of the ships will be assembled in China, and will be towed to Finland for assembly.

This arrangement is an indication that there is no point in Finland competing with Asian mass production and steel manufacture. On the other hand, it is a comfort for Finland that steel does not account for a very large part of the total value of the order.

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