To rebuild, we may need a little help from abroad

One of the roadblocks to modernizing America’s decaying infrastructure network is that we quite literally can’t build stuff anymore:

Some transport analysts caution, however, that Trump’s gargantuan vision faces equally big hurdles. Chief among them is that the cutting-edge technology and expertise to build high-speed train systems and massive highway and bridge networks no longer resides in the US.

“Are there any US companies that can build high-speed trains and related infrastructure? Not that I’ve seen,” said Kevin C. Coates, a Washington, D.C.-based advanced transportation consultant.

Other analysts echo the view that American firms aren’t well-positioned to build effective transport infrastructure on the scale of Trump’s plan. This is due to long-term neglect of the sector and a general lack of US funding for public works projects in recent decades.

The irony is that to build America, Trump may have to buy foreign.

Industry analysts say the companies with the abilities to fulfill such advanced projects are mostly Japanese, Chinese and German companies. They include Kawasaki Heavy Industries, China Railway Rolling Stock (CRRC) and Siemens AG.

Will America turn to its creditors for the know-how to rebuild its infrastructure?

(Part 2 of the article series here.)

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