Made in China !

Art

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I doubt the final price depends on wether a product made in Japan or China. Goods did not become cheaper when production moved to China, it's the profits which have increased. My RX100 was made in Japan. The next batch was made in China, same price.


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OzRay

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The battery that came with my E-M1 had the cells made in Japan, but was further 'processed in Indonesia' (I assume assembled in Indonesia). My replacement BLN-1, which I received today, has the cells made in Japan, but further processed in Vietnam. I guess manufacturers go where the labour costs are the lowest.
 

MajorMagee

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Personally, I rather pay a little extra for 'Made in USA' or 'Made in Japan' branded products.

At some point, which I believe is sooner rather than later, Western companies will realize that there is no longer a labour advantage considering that Chinese labour cost is on the rise and continues to do so, to offset the cost of piracy due to manufacturing in China.

Production and manufacturing will come back to the West, or Eastern Europe soon.
We have more quality problems with our US suppliers than the ones in China because we don't watch them as closely. :rolleyes:

I agree labor costs in China continue to slowly go up. We've made some progress with repatriating manufacturing in the last couple of years, but it has more to do with material costs than the labor rates. Our products have always had a high material content relative to the labor cost. The Chinese Government's previous 5 year plans included a rebate of the VAT for any material (particularly steel) that was exported (including bad parts that would later get scrapped in the US). Most companies sold items for export at cost and pocketed the VAT rebate as their profit. The latest 5 year plan is more focused on production for domestic consumption for their newly established middle class, and has reduced the rebates, hence the price rise of their exports.
 

OzRay

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There is one absolute that manufacturing in China has provided and that is 'affordable' consumer goods. Were is not for China, and other places where the labour costs are low, most simply couldn't afford the goods that we buy today. Just compare the prices of digital cameras when they were first introduced and what they cost now. The same applies across the board to all products. The downside might be that local manufacturing has moved overseas, but with local labour costs, manufacturing would have been killed off regardless, as is happening right now with what's left in Australia.
 

T N Args

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There is the moral price of their low labour costs, of course, and that is a personal consideration for the buyer.
 

OzRay

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Much depends on one's perspective. Some may look upon it as cheap or slave labour, the workers may look upon it as jobs and betterment of lives and family. There have been unfortunate stories on the likes of Foxconn, but whether that is indicative of every manufacturer in China is unknown. Also, cheap labour is found in Indonesia, Vietnam, Malaysia, The Philippines, Mexico, Brazil etc. It can be a case of jobs or abject poverty. Where I live, Asian workers are flown over for the harvest season each year, because no Australian wants to do that sort of work. They are paid lower wages, but housed etc and when finished, they return as wealthy individuals, by comparison to their peers. One unscrupulous company has been found out recently to be taking advantage of these labourers, but that doesn't mean everyone is tarred with the same brush.
 

T N Args

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I'll assume you simply haven't read or researched this topic, specifically regarding China. Do children under 10, children under 7, also 'depend on one's perspective'? 75 hour, 7-day weeks, 52 weeks per year, nowhere near family? Anti-suicide nets in factories?

Now there is something for us to record with our fancy, cheap cameras. :shhh:

Note: I buy Chinese product, I'm not on a pedestal here. But I don't rationalise it away; I acknowledge the moral price. I take small steps to minimise the damage. For me it's a path, a factor, a consideration, but not a denial.
 

OzRay

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Yes, there are some very bad stories that come out from China, but is it the norm, considering the sheer size of the population? Also, many of the stories that come out are by the likes of 60 Minutes, often prompted by various groups that are against all sorts of things, frequently embellishing the truth and facts to suit their agenda. That's why I take some of this with a grain of salt and accept that the world overall is not a nice place for everyone, and that we can't always judge others by our standards (which aren't always that noble either). However, the other thing to ponder is, despite the potential for these things to happen, is the overall progress that industrialisation, and the ability and opportunity to manufacture and sell goods overseas a bad thing for the Chinese populace?
 

jnewell

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I'll assume you simply haven't read or researched this topic, specifically regarding China. Do children under 10, children under 7, also 'depend on one's perspective'? 75 hour, 7-day weeks, 52 weeks per year, nowhere near family? Anti-suicide nets in factories?

Now there is something for us to record with our fancy, cheap cameras. :shhh:

Note: I buy Chinese product, I'm not on a pedestal here. But I don't rationalise it away; I acknowledge the moral price. I take small steps to minimise the damage. For me it's a path, a factor, a consideration, but not a denial.
The question is not simplified by the fact that most western economies have gone through the same phases - and some have gone through worse. I'm not defending the Chinese, just suggesting that they're not unique.
 

Wasabi Bob

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Factors that contributed to made in China

I'm going to stir up a bit of a hornet's nest ! So please forgive me.

... My second, the Panasonic DMC-G1 (vintage 2009) was also built in Japan. I have yet to purchase a third but am considering a G6. I am however, a little concerned about the move by Panasonic and Olympus and many others to "Made in China".... I am aware that lower manufacturing costs have driven this re-location but am not entirely convinced that Chinese standards (despite overseeing quality control) match those of the mature and experienced camera industry of Japan."

Dave
Dave,
"Made in China" does not necessarily mean that the manufacturing process is farmed out to a third party inferior company. In the case of Panasonic, I know from reading several stories that their manufacturing facilities are run by Panasonic management from Japan and the products receive the same technical scrutiny as those built in Japan. While labor is less expensive in China, Japan's population has also been subjected with up to a 50% increase in the cost of electricity following the nuclear accident in Fukashima. That has a direct effect on the company's profit, so the inevitable decision is move the manufacturing or increase the cost of the product.

Many years ago "Made in Japan" was regarded as a cheap and inferior product. Today, Japan's lens are regarded as high if not higher than the German Zeiss and Leica glass that was as good as it got in the 1950's - 1960's.

China's manufacturing techniques are good enough for Apple, and few can complain about the quality of your iPhone or iPad. Apple made the China factor less significant by stating on their products, "Deigned by Apple in the US - Assembled in China".
 

taz98spin

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Note: I buy Chinese product, I'm not on a pedestal here. But I don't rationalise it away; I acknowledge the moral price. I take small steps to minimise the damage. For me it's a path, a factor, a consideration, but not a denial.
Really??

When I buy Apple products or my m43 gear, or other products, I look at price, warranty and features.

Please elaborate how you minimize the damage?
 

T N Args

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By taking Chinese origin into account and sometimes avoiding Chinese product despite no concerns on price, warranty or features.
 

nardoleo

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I am ok with made in china electronic devices like cameras and computers, and it is basically unavoidable anyway.

I do try not to buy food products made in China though. (on the backs of all those horrible stories we hear about things like milk powder poisioning).
 

OzRay

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I buy Chinese food products, but they are mainly sauces and the like. It's not as if the west is immune to tainted food products; we've had enough examples here of bad salami, cheese (recently) etc, usually discovered after a bunch of people have become seriously ill. The French were renowned a while back for putting ethylene glycol (radiator fluid) into their wines. And so it goes.
 

yakky

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I buy Chinese food products, but they are mainly sauces and the like. It's not as if the west is immune to tainted food products; we've had enough examples here of bad salami, cheese (recently) etc, usually discovered after a bunch of people have become seriously ill. The French were renowned a while back for putting ethylene glycol (radiator fluid) into their wines. And so it goes.
I think you might want to read up on the baby formula issue to see what it was really like.
 

GFFPhoto

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Actually, I saw a televised interview of Tim Cook in December 2012 and he said Apple wanted to manufacture products in the U.S. but there were no workers with the skills needed to make them. Cost was not the reason given. He said that they were working with manufacturing companies to hire and train workers who would be able to produce the products, and they planned to begin producing MacBooks in the U.S. in 2013. I don't know if they met that goal or not.
I'm going to call BS on that. "No workers with the skills needed to make them" is just PR speak for "we haven't taken the two weeks needed to teach them the steps in the manufacturing process". We can make sterile, dust free fabrication facilities to make the chips that go inside, but we cant assemble them? I don't think so. Every major auto manufacturer in the world has a plant in the US because any labor savings from manufacturing elsewhere (except Mexico and Canada) are completely eaten up when you ship a 4000lb vehicle overseas. On the other hand, You can fit an awful lot of iPhones in a shipping container. If you save 1 dollar in labor on each one....
 

mievil

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I'll assume you simply haven't read or researched this topic, specifically regarding China. Do children under 10, children under 7, also 'depend on one's perspective'? 75 hour, 7-day weeks, 52 weeks per year, nowhere near family? Anti-suicide nets in factories?
The way you are trying to state this is as if every factory in China is being operated by preteens ready to jump out windows. This is not the case. As stated, there are a couple factories that are very hard on their employees, but not every factory is like that. And as stated, the US wasn't much better in the early 1900s. And it was recorded with cameras. ;) I really have a hard time buying that you are trying to make any steps to stop child labor (or whatever other thing you are trying to minimize the damage of) in any foreign country, specifically because you don't have any real idea on what each and every factory you are buying from, or boycotting is doing. You can generalize. But you'd be incorrect.
 
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