In America, “Made in China” usually means “made low-quality”. Chinese products are stocked in retail stores across the nation, yet most of us don’t have a positive view of Chinese quality of production. However, these beliefs are slowly starting to change. Chinese manufacturing in many ways has boosted the American economy and lowers the cost of goods without sacrificing quality or efficiency.
China’s industrialization, which grew 10 times faster than Great Britain’s during the Industrial Revolution, has many benefits to the American economy. These are just some of the reasons we should have a more favorable view of “Made in China” products and the manufacturers who provide them.
1. Chinese manufacturing helps American economy.
Many people believe that outsourcing manufacturing of American products to China causes problems with domestic job growth. However this is hardly the case. Only 2.7% of American consumer spending goes to products manufactured in China according to the Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco research report: The U.S. Content of “Made in China.” Even these products put money in the pockets of the American retailers and distributors who sell Chinese-manufactured products.
Chinese contract manufacturing has allowed America to change its economic focus, replacing factory jobs with other specialized areas. This is a great benefit to our economy, and allows for a greater variety of jobs in the states. Plus, the mass volume of products made in China would not be possible in America. Contract manufacturing helps not only American businesses, but American consumers and employees.
2. Not lesser quality, just a lower price.
Many consumers assume that a product’s price is a direct indicator of its quality. However, business owners know that competitive pricing has much more to do with supply chain costs and augmenting profits than it does the objective quality of a product. Though Chinese products are cheaper, they are no lesser quality than American made.
Chinese cost of living is much lower than in the U.S. Their massive population also contributes to the lower cost of labor in China as compared to the U.S. China also has a greater abundance and greater access to raw materials from neighboring countries. These reasons, coupled with China’s favorable tax laws, allow for less expensive exports. Chinese products can be made with the same quality, but at a lower price than American manufacturers could ever achieve.
3. Wages and working conditions are changing too.
Chinese manufacturing used to have a poor reputation for the working conditions and low wages of employees. However, this is the rare exception, not the rule in China. Chinese legislation has made many strides to improve employee rights, and employers are following suit. Most Chinese manufacturers follow the same code of ethics as their American clients.
4. Selling “Made in China” products to Chinese markets.
Contract manufacturing isn’t the only way American companies are benefiting from the growing Chinese economy. More and more American companies are expanding their markets to include overseas sales. China is one of the fastest growing consumer markets in the world. They’re currently in a transition from an investment economy to a consumer economy, and the time to jump in is now. The Chinese take pride in their domestic products and will pay premium prices for products made in China.
5. Automotive excellence.
China is one of the world’s leading automotive manufacturers. Car companies can manufacture their products overseas for a significantly lower cost while improving the quality for consumers. Most American companies manufacture parts, some entire products, overseas.
Volvo, a former Ford line, is actually a Chinese-owned company. Ford sold Volvo to Geely automotive, a Chinese contract manufacturer. Volvo was, in fact, the brand that made the first Chinese car exported to the United States.
6. Fastest growing tech manufacturing industry.
It may or may not be a surprise, but the majority of electronics sold in America are made in China. Smartphones, computers, televisions, and more are sold to American markets from Chinese manufacturers. 7 out of 10 of the top smartphone manufacturers are Chinese. Companies such as Apple and Samsung outsource the majority of their manufacturing to China, because they can expect the same quality at a fraction of American manufacturing costs.
7. High-quality clothing manufacturing.
Clothing manufactured in China is of the highest quality. Brands such as Prada and Armani have turned to China for manufacturing, even though these are well known Italian brands. China has a long-standing reputation as a textile and clothing exporter, but recent moves to industrialize rural areas have increased productivity even more.