Inside a Vietnamese factory. Photo: Getty Images

As the trade war with Beijing drags on, dozens of firms — from high-tech electronics manufacturers to apparel companies — have the same idea: relocate out of China to dodge the tariffs.

Yes, but: One seldom-discussed consequence of those moves is a potential labor shortage in places like Vietnam, Bangladesh and Cambodia, where many U.S. companies are fleeing.

What's happening: Clothing and consumer goods companies that require low-end manufacturing had already been leaving China in search of cheaper labor before the trade war. Now, tariffs and threats of intellectual property theft are pushing the higher-tech firms, like automakers and electronics manufacturers, out of the country as well.

  • U.S. apparel and footwear companies like Hanes, Levi's and Nike have steadily shifted to Vietnam and Bangladesh as the third and fourth batches of tariffs, which largely target consumer products, loom, says Mike Zuccaro, a senior analyst at Moody's.
  • HP and Dell are the latest electronics companies to go, and Amazon, Microsoft, Sony and Nintendo are looking to leave as well, reports the Nikkei Asian Review.

The impact: Together, HP and Dell make up around 40% of the laptop market, and they will move up to 30% of production elsewhere. Nikkei did not report where the firms intend to go.

The bottom line: "These countries are smaller, and the supply of land and skills and labor doesn't match that in China," says Joy Dantong Ma of the Paulson Institute. "And it's not just the labor but the roads, bridges and airports. It will take a while for the infrastructure to catch up."

Go deeper: The world can't afford a trade war

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Robert Mueller speaks out on Roger Stone commutation

Former Special Counsel Robert Mueller testifies before the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence on Capitol Hill on Wednesday July 24, 2019. Photo: The Washington Post / Contributor

Former special counsel Robert Mueller responded to claims from President Trump and his allies that Roger Stone was a "victim" in the Justice Department's investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 election, writing in a Washington Post op-ed published Saturday: "He remains a convicted felon, and rightly so."

Why it matters: The rare public comments by Mueller come on the heels of President Trump's move to commute the sentence of his longtime associate, who was sentenced in February to 40 months in prison for crimes stemming from the Russia investigation. The controversial decision brought an abrupt end to the possibility of Stone spending time behind bars.

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Trump wearing a face mask in Walter Reed National Military Medical Center on July 11. Photo: Alex Edelman/AFP via Getty Images

President Trump wore a face mask during his Saturday visit to Walter Reed National Military Medical Center, according to AP.

Why it matters: This is the first known occasion the president has appeared publicly with a facial covering as recommended by health officials since the coronavirus pandemic began, AP writes.

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