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M Made in China - A State of the Market Report

by Roger Caffin

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Article Summary:

If you have all this gear from top-brand American companies, why should you be interested in Chinese gear? Well, take a close look at that brand-name gear, especially at the little label that says where it's made. Oops - it says "Made in China." Yep, rightly or wrongly, most gear sold by the big-name companies is made off-shore these days, and mostly in Asia, or China. It's only the small cottage industries which still make gear in America.

What happens when the Asian (Chinese) factories, which have been making gear under contract to American companies, decide to start making the same gear under their own brand? Obviously, they can't churn out the exact same items with just a different brand on them: they have to come up with their own variations, even if they are rather close. Do they have the necessary skills to produce world-class designs by themselves? If so, what happens then? And what are the long-term consequences for everyone?

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