Watching people shop and try out the newest gadgets I find it hard to believe they give the origin of the high tech product's manufacture a second thought. I agree people are becoming more aware of labor practises etc. but those folk must be in the small minority.
mcridge--I'd also add that California is enacting a bill that will require due diligence on behalf of Asian companies to demonstrate they are not abusing labor practices. As Bolaji points out, it will be up to CA to monitor compliance, but a number of organizations in the industry belive such measures will start to hold companies accountable for their labor practices.
Mcridge, I think it's important that as you pointed out these companies do the monitoring themselves because the Chinese suppliers may not always be honest.
Aside from this, I also believe it's important that Western manufacturers maintain Western standards in China. Currently, there's a Chinese standard and there's a Western standard and, of course, we know one is far better than the other. (Western workers don't live in dormitories but they do in China.) Companies that manufacture in China for Western consumption already know they are stepping into a murky situation. The least they can do is enforce standards that are acceptable in their home countries rather than simply the ones China sets for them.
There is reason to criticize China, but not for the items I mention above.
@Barbara, true. I agree with you. But its also important to note that China is not a developing nation anymore. Its a developed nation and is directly competing with US to grab the top spot. So china would do everything to take advantage of it being the destination hub for outsourcing. Already US lawmakers have sought 'legislative solution' to ban Huawei.
You do not mention that China uses slave labor in many of it's production facilities. All that a company needs to do to "offset the made in China label" is to be responsible about the types of Chinese faciltiies where it purchases its products. The company should attest that slave labor is not used in production of the products it is purchasing and reselling and that it is being responsible to ensure that its Chinese suppliers use safe and healthy ingredients. I wouldn't want the job, but they need inspectors to ensure that this is true. Sadly, none of your commenters seem aware of this!
I include such U.S. marketing giants as WalMart in this. Just do it!
I agree with you, although probably with consumer electronics or non critical equipment. When it comes to something critical to business, for non-economical reasons, people tend to go with the big US brand, etc.
@Jacob--Clairvoyant is correct--China is being made a scapegoat for problems that originated in other parts of the world. The US brought on its own debt crisis and US manufacturers voluntarily moved offshore. However, China's success in the global economy has made it a target for criticism. There is reason to criticize China, but not for the items I mention above.
I personally don't have the concerns others do when it comes to where my products are made. I am more concerned with the quality of the product and the overall cost. There are plenty of products that have a "made in" stamp that are using parts from other countries.
EBN Dialogue enables and encourages you to participate in live chats with notable leaders and luminaries. Not only editors and journalists, but the entire EBN community is able to comment and ask questions. Listed below are upcoming and archived chats.
Thailand Stages a Comeback Join EBN contributor Jennifer Baljko on Thursday August 23, 2012, at 11:00 a.m. EST for a live chat on how electronic manufacturers in Thailand have shored up their supply chain to reduce the impact of future natural disasters.
Microsoft Surface: Potential Winners & Losers What are the implications for the electronics industry supply chain of Microsoft Corp.'s decision to launch its own tablet PC? Join industry veteran and EE Times' systems and OEM expert Rick Merritt on Tuesday, July 3, at 12:00 pm EDT for a Live Chat on this subject.
Join EBN contributor Jennifer Baljko on Thursday August 23, 2012, at 11:00 a.m. EST for a live chat on how electronic manufacturers in Thailand have shored up their supply chain to reduce the impact of future natural disasters.
Peter Drucker famously said "Trying to predict the future is like trying to drive down a country road at night with no lights while looking out the back window." Yet in the razor's-edge world of electronics—with a lean supply chain and just-in-time demands—the need to know the future is vital.
While no one really can accurately predict the future, we can take guidance from another Drucker saying which is the best way to predict the future is to create it.
You've heard the saying "the No. 1 supply chain risk is your people." That hasn't always been the case. But today's complex global supply chain requires a new type of multitalented employee. It's one who understands, finance, marketing, economics, is savvy with technology, graceful with relationships and can think analytically.
Where are these people? Are universities properly preparing the next generation supply chain professionals? How do train your existing workforce for these new, demanding positions?
Brian Fuller, editor-in-chief of EBN, will lead a 60-minute Avnet Velocity panel discussion that will ask and answer these and other questions swirling around today's supply-chain talent challenges.