The National Outsourcing Association (NOA) has hit back at MP claims that globalisation will threaten highly skilled jobs in the UK.
It follows a report published earlier this week by the Treasury Select Committee, which warns that “an inexorable shift in global economic power from West to East is under way”, with China, India and Brazil set to become economic “powerhouses”.
MPs urged for action to be taken to minimise the impact of globalisation on high and low-skilled workers within the UK. They added that some jobs within the low-skilled service sector could not be done by cheap overseas labour.
However, the NOA said: “We disagree – we believe that globalisation will help rather than hinder the UK economy. The growth of the global market will boost the UK economy, and lead to job creation across the board.”
According to the outsourcing body, the continuous demand for cheap products and services and global competition drove up high labour-intensive processes towards low labour cost areas, whether skilled or unskilled.
“This isn’t the fault of outsourcing any more than workers in earlier times striking against machines taking their jobs is the fault of the machines,” it said. “This is a by-product of globalisation, but not necessarily one that will have negative consequences.”
The NOA challenged the local economy to react to an increase in low labour cost areas, by developing the skills and competencies necessary to develop new products, designs and technologies, so as to create better value. “This means better education, training, entrepreneurship and supporting the cultural side,” it said.
“At the highest end [management and director level within companies], there is already a highly educated and trained workforce, so the human capital for professional jobs is already there. It is at the lower, less skilled end of the spectrum where both outsourcing and globalisation have been more widely accused of shipping jobs,” the NOA concluded.