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Plastics Products Manufacturing Workers

Outlook

Increased competition in foreign markets will reduce opportunities for plastics products manufacturing workers. As a result, the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) predicts that employment for plastic machine workers will decline through 2024. Opportunities for computer-controlled machine tool operators, metal and plastic will be much better, growing faster than the average for all careers through 2024. The DOL reports that "many firms are adopting technologies such as computer numerically controlled (CNC) machine tools and robots to improve quality and lower production costs. The switch to CNC machinery requires computer programmers instead of machine setters, operators, and tenders. Therefore, demand for manual machine tool operators and tenders is likely to be reduced by these new technologies, and conversely, demand for CNC machine programmers is expected to be strong."

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