Have you ever wondered why so many products that are “Made in China” are not only cheap but also of poor quality? Well, you're not alone. Since the 1980s, Chinese leaders made economic development a top priority and designed products tailored to market expectations. This means that Chinese products are generally of low quality when consumers prefer to pay less for products. In today's post, we point out 6 reasons why Chinese products are so cheap.
With approximately 1.39 billion people, China is the most populous country in the world. Due to overpopulation, manufacturers cannot find enough materials to manufacture products to meet consumer demands. Therefore, companies and businesses resort to using low-quality materials to manufacture low-quality products. In other words, companies want to manufacture items on a large scale with minimum costs as possible. Additionally, most companies and businesses disregard the safety standards set when manufacturing items. Instead, they use cheaper materials to produce goods. Most products from leading tech companies like Apple and Microsoft are copied and sold at a cheaper price to consumers. The manufacture of counterfeit products has, for a long time, been synonymous with China not only because of a lack of industry expertise, but also the presence of shadow companies that don't have sufficient capital. It's not the first time China has been accused of stealing designs from reputable companies from the west. Such piracy leads to the manufacture of second rate items using low-quality materials, which are later sold at cheaper prices.
China has a huge labor pull and it's not exactly strict about laws related to child labor or minimum wages. And since the supply of workers surpasses the demand for low-wage employees, most workers are willing to work overtime for low wages. Normally, workers who have to work many shifts for minimum wage, lack motivation. And in most of the shadow companies, workers are paid depending on the number of goods produced. This means they have to work fast to produce as many goods as possible without paying attention to the quality of the products.
China has been accused of keeping a check on the appreciation of yuan to make exports more attractive than similar goods produced by other countries. In 2017, we saw the yuan appreciate by 8 percent when the U.S. president, Donald Trump threatened to expose China’s currency manipulation. However, the trade wars didn’t stop there and in 2018, the yuan depreciated to an all-time low since 2008. This made Chinese exports cheaper than most competitors, further expanding the consumer base around the globe.
Human Rights Issues
We mentioned earlier that China does not abide by the guidelines on child labor, minimum wage laws, health and safety regulations, and pollution. Most Chinese factories employ child labor who have to endure long shift hours without compensation. Even worse, there have been reports of factories paying workers once per year to prevent them from quitting before the year ends. Working in such a degrading environment is not only inhuman but also bound to severely affect the quality of the goods. Add to this the disregard for environmental pollution and you can imagine the effects on human lives. And due to the lack of expertise, you find that most products that fail prematurely are discarded in landfills.
China is the third-largest country by territory, sharing borders with other nations. For decades, territorial conflicts have caused a lot of tension between China and the neighboring countries, especially India. Recently, the China-India skirmishes that were reportedly perpetrated by China in May 2020 have escalated tensions between the two countries and Indian leaders have been calling on their citizens to boycott Chinese products. This is not the first time China and India are having conflicts. Back in 2016, China blocked India from entering the NSG and repeatedly kept India out of the UNSC. Due to the constant conflicts, and despite China's global reach, most countries are now campaigning against using products ‘Made in China’.
In view of these circumstances, it's important for Indian citizens to support their own by buying their own. Remember, the quality of most products made locally is better than those made in China. And with the invention of better technology, manufacturing is becoming cheaper, hence reducing the cost of labor. This means that businesses no longer have to rely on China for cheaper goods.
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