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Walmart Pushing for American-Made Goods

Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- Is U.S. manufacturing heading for a revival? The world’s largest retailer, Walmart, is leading a new effort to bring more manufacturing jobs back to this country.

The company’s many critics may see this as more than a little ironic as Walmart’s decades-long push for low prices were part of the trend that sent production and jobs overseas to low-wage suppliers.

With rising American productivity, increases in Chinese labor costs and falling energy prices, there could be good reasons to bring more work home.

“We are entering a new era of opportunity to boost American manufacturing,” US Commerce Secretary Penny Pritzker told a two-day conference in Orlando.

The goal of the event was to work out how to “drive investment in American manufacturing,” said Bill Simon, CEO of the US division of Walmart.

What remains to be seen is whether this is more of a public relations campaign than the start of a major shift after three decades of decline for many sectors of U.S. manufacturing.

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio

ABC News Radio