The word “clothing” may sound like an oxymoron, but the garment industry is actually made in many countries around the world.
Clothes are not just clothing; they are also accessories, and in China, many of the largest brands are based there.
Some of the world’s largest brands make clothing in the country, including Nike, Zara, Calvin Klein and Forever 21.
They also make shoes and other apparel.
“It’s the same with clothing,” says Jeremy Scott, an expert on clothing at the London School of Economics.
“There’s a big difference between the Chinese fashion industry and the American industry.”
The biggest brands in China The clothes factories in China produce about one-third of all the clothing in America.
This means they are responsible for 80% of all American clothing, according to Scott.
The rest is made in other countries, such as India, Vietnam and Japan.
China is also the largest source of clothing for the US.
“The biggest companies that are in China are those that make clothing for big brands like Nike, Adidas, and Zara,” Scott says.
These big brands are also the ones who make the clothes that go on the shelves of most American retailers, so they are key to the global supply chain.
But it’s not just the big brands that make the clothing.
Many of the smaller, independent companies also make the garments in China.
Scott says the clothing factories in these factories often do not pay for their own employees.
In China, there is a very tight labour market, so the workers often end up working long hours and sometimes are forced to take sick leave.
“Even though they’re not making clothes for large companies, they’re often working for the smaller brands that are part of the chain,” Scott explains.
And when they leave, the factories often close down.
“So the small independent businesses that make clothes for small brands, they can often make more money because they’re the ones that have been there for years,” Scott adds.
“But the big companies have a hard time making that much money.”
China’s clothing industry is not cheap Some experts say the apparel industry is making some of the most expensive clothes in the world, but they say there are ways to cut back on the costs.
Scott suggests that retailers can reduce the cost of their products by buying fewer pieces.
“You could try to buy fewer products in the US and use fewer people,” he says.
“And the way that you do that is to buy a few items at a time and reduce the amount of work that you’re doing.
So if you do those two things, you can reduce costs.”
Scott also suggests that the Chinese government might help small businesses by introducing a sales tax on clothing.
“If you’re going to have a sales taxes, you should also have a price tax on everything,” he explains.
“A lot of small companies in China have been working for years on getting their products into the stores.”
China will need to change its policies to boost the supply chain The government’s goal is to cut the cost and quality of Chinese clothing by at least 60%, according to a report by the International Labour Organization (ILO).
But the country still has a long way to go to reach this goal.
“This is a complex industry, and the Chinese garment industry has many problems,” says Scott.
“Its not a simple question of how do you improve the quality of clothing, and it’s a complicated question of whether the government is going to take the steps necessary to achieve the goal of making clothing that’s cheap and accessible in the most cost-effective way possible.”