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China manufacturers for textile and apparel: the trend

AQF_China manufacturers for textile and apparel- best sourcing destination by Mc Kinsey

The manufacturing industry is constantly changing all over the world. A Mc Kinsey study points out how. China’s role in the global economy is obviously important, and the for the textile in specific. China manufacturers for textile and apparel keep being the preferred choice of international buyers.

The manufacturing evolution in a global economy

Globally, the manufacturing industry represents approximately 16% of the global GDP and 14% of global employment. It continues to grow all over the world even though its influence on the economy of developed nations is limited compared to others: the manufacturing industry, specially textile and apparel, has a strong influence in the growth of developing countries.

Assuming the developing economies follow the patterns found in the developed countries, as the manufacturing industry develops, salaries increase, workers satisfy their basic needs and start to spend their new found extra money on services. Slowly, the services industry takes over from the manufacturing industry in terms of importance in the overall economy..

Textile and apparel manufacturing evolution from the 18th century till today

The modern manufacturing of textile and apparel by using machinery started in the late 18th century during the first industrial revolution in Britain. Then the manufacturing moved from North America/Northern Europe to Japan in the 1950’s. In the 1970’s the manufacturing industry already started to move to Asia: Hong Kong, then Taiwan and South Korea. And in the 1980’s with the opening to the world of China, the textile and apparel manufacturing industry moved to China and few other Asian countries such as Indonesia, Malaysia, The Philippines or Thailand.

Role in the global market 2013 of the China manufacturers for textile and apparel

The graph above shows that the whole Asia region represents 40% of the main players on the global market. The rest is divided between the American continent and Europe.

China manufacturers for textile and apparel represents 36% of the global market, followed by the United States and more surprisingly: Italy. China role remains important in the textile and apparel manufacturing industry nowadays even though we often talk about other destinations such as India.

A few reasons why China manufacturers for the textile and apparel are still the global leaders:

  • Labor costs remains very competitive
  • Keeping unemployment down is still important policy for Beijing:
    The country needs labor intensive industries such as the textile and apparel manufacturing industry.
  • Good know-how of the textile and apparel manufacturing
  • Industrial infrastructures for high volumes production
  • Flexibility
  • Good selling prices
  • Existing Logistic infrastructures

For you: are China manufacturers for textile and apparel still the best?

Graph via Mc Kinsey study

Picture of Claire Piccinno, writing for Asian Quality Focus

Claire Piccinno

After experiencing critical quality problems while working for trading company in China, Claire decided to dedicate to the quality control industry since 2009. She is now AQF marketing manager.

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