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Although Christmas is still more than two months away, factories in China are working hard to prepare for the holiday season. September and October are the busiest months for manufacturing seasonal goods to meet shipping deadlines.
To compensate for slow US and European markets, factory owner He Songping explains his methods.
[He Songping, Co-owner, China Zhongsheng Crafts Co. Ltd.]:
“Right now, because the global economy is not doing very well, our factory had to take steps early on to deal with this problem. We had to talk to our old customers earlier to try to find new business opportunities. Overall, for factories manufacturing Christmas goods, there is not too much of an effect on our sales."
He and his brother employ over 200 workers, but recent inflation in China has made workers either harder to find or demanding higher wages.
[Fu Chensong, Factory Worker]:
"Of course, there is a difference (with inflation). Nowadays, I keep feeling that I don't have enough money to spend. After such a hard day of work I feel I don't have enough to survive. I feel that if the boss is making profits, he should improve the welfare benefits and salary for the workers."
This creates a worker shortage for small and medium sized businesses. China’s exports bounced back up in September from a 28-month low in August, and is likely to stabilize.