Trane will move production of its scroll compressors to Monterrey, Mexico and its gear-drive centrifugal water chillers to Taicang, China in the second quarter of 2004. The move, which will affect about 350 jobs in LaCrosse, Wis., and shift to Trane's existing plants, will take place over the following 12 months to China and the following three years to Mexico.

The move of the gear-drive centrifugal chillers is partly due to the product's presence in the Asian market. “That product is marketed and sold exclusively outside of the U.S., primarily in Asia,” Art Scheskie, communications manager for Trane, said.

He identified lower freight and logistics costs as a more competitive way to service its Asian market.

Scheskie said the production move of the scroll compressors to the Mexico plant, which currently produces reciprocating compressors, will lower overall manufacturing costs and improve efficiency. “There is a lot of commonality that will provide efficiency when producing all of those products,” Scheskie said.