High-tech companies face a shortfall of some 40m skilled workers by 2020, with businesses based in China likely to be among the worst hit, according to a study by the McKinsey Global Institute.
The institute – a research arm of the McKinsey strategy consultancy – says that manufacturing will be the sector of the global economy that will be most severely affected.
The specific difficulties that McKinsey foresees for China indicates that the country – which took over from the US last year as the world’s biggest manufacturing country by output – may have trouble continuing its fast rate of expansion in this sector.
Parts of manufacturing likely to suffer the most through the recruitment difficulties include the motor, medical equipment and aerospace sectors.
The impact of the skills shortages in such industries is likely to worsen in the next few years, due to the failure by academic institutions to train enough people to high enough standards to keep pace with demand, said James Manyika, a director of the institute.
“The extent of the skills deficit will be a huge constraint on the ability of many companies to develop their businesses in the way they want,” said Mr Manyika.
In the McKinsey study, a high-skilled person is defined as someone who has gained a university degree or equivalent qualification – irrespective of discipline…
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