The Impending Age of Housekeeping!!!!

The tech revolution of the second half of the past century did not leave a single aspect of modern life untouched...

Lured by the miraculous growth of emerging markets over the past two decades, many investment bankers are getting ready for a new wave of Trans-Pacific related trade deals.

They might be headed towards a big surprise as the stubborn world economy is giving signs of an impending shift in its growth sources, however.

The tech revolution of the second half of the past century did not leave a single aspect of modern life untouched.

Information, communications and transportation transformed consumption, production, leisure and entertainment into a worldwide supply chain that links households, shops, manufacturing plants and destinations.

Trade built the global edifice on top of the urban society without pausing to ponder the adaptability and adequacy of its structures to the new economic tasks. And over time they proved to be inadequate.

Financial bubbles bursts provided a dramatic revelation of existing mismatches between the sources of economic growth and the public policies created to promote them.

Dysfunctionality between job creation and skills is bringing student loan debt to about 11% of U.S. GDP. Job enrichment is prevented by regulatory and taxation burdens. And the population is beginning to show signs of losing patience with traditional politics both in the U.S. as well as in the rest of the Americas.

In Latin America the search for a way out of the development trap led many countries to try once again the populist formula.

In the U.S. the entrance of Donald Trump into the center of politics is part of this same civic reaction. Because just as after many remodeling and addition exercises a house needs to retool its circuits, the world economy is demanding such an exercise to better serve the cause of progress.

Retooling demands better and more adequate infrastructure and the rethinking of urban settlements and transportation both public as well as private.

This demands a change in focus from matching worldwide supply chains to matching civic needs with resources in the interest of enhanced productivity.

And this essentially is a domestic task.

Add to this circumstance the fact that retooling in manufacturing demands enhanced penetration of robotics and well-trained labor to build the robots and you will realize that training will most certainly take over education in private and public budgets.

Training is not only local but economic sector and task specific to realize this fundamental activity will not depend on any global network.

Robotic enhanced manufacturing and infrastructure rebooting will shorten the supply chain. Less countries will need to be involved in a given production exercise and more local resources would need to be engaged.

In the U.S. and Canada case it seems to be relatively clear that Mexico would be the robotic workshop while their industries would concentrate in software development and infrastructure building.

Same process could emerge from the free exchanges of the Mercosur economies. But it remains to be seen whether member nations will ever give up protectionism and corporativism.

Finally additive manufacturing or 3-D printing will also create opportunities to turn any creative exercise into a local task by virtue of reducing the costs of production. All these trends are opening the doors to an Age of Housekeeping in the Americas and the world.

Published by Latin American Herald Tribune on June 12th, 2016