Chinese Investment is Reshaping Africa’s Manufacturing Sector

Eric Olander, Cobus van Staden & more
Author Irene Yuan Sun argues in her new book that Africa is poised to become the world’s next manufacturing hub, boosted by Chinese investment and production expertise. With costs steadily rising in the People’s Republic of China, more and more...

Africa Will Take China’s Place as the next Factory of the World

Irene Yuan Sun
Quartz
I’m only thirty, but I personally witnessed a time when China’s now car-clogged streets were full of bicycles instead. Such has been the rapidity of China’s transformation, sparked by the rise of Factory China. In the quarter century since I first...

Tesla Strikes Deal with Shanghai to Build Factory in China

Tim Higgins, Trefor Moss, and Eva Dou
Wall Street Journal
Electric-car maker Tesla Inc. has reached an agreement to set up its own manufacturing facility in Shanghai, according to people briefed on the plan, a move that could help the company gain traction in China’s fast-growing EV market.

China Shuts Down Tens of Thousands of Factories in Unprecedented Pollution Crackdown

Rob Schmitz
NPR
In the gritty industrial town of Yiwu, workers prepare jeans to be dyed in a vivid range of colors.Two months ago, this factory — and this entire city, located in China's eastern province of Zhejiang — was a much quieter place. Inspection crews...

The Human Cost of China’s Economic Reforms

Robin Brant
BBC
Mr Yu is worried that millions of workers the Chinese government plans to lay off from failing state owned companies will be “abandoned” like he says he was 15 years ago.

China, Like U.S., Struggles to Revive Industrial Heartland

Michael Schuman
New York Times
The hulking, brown–brick industrial plants lining the roads were once the backbone of this gritty city. Today, they are outdated and unwanted, and the region is one of the Chinese economy’s most troubled. 

Environment

07.06.17

Industrial Energy Efficiency Can Improve Air Quality

from chinadialogue
Despite extensive efforts by the Chinese government to improve air quality, including the introduction of the State Council’s “Ten Measures” Action Plan and implementation of regional air quality control measures, air pollution recently worsened in...

China’s Economy Grows 6.9%, but Warning Signs Persist

New York Times
China’s economy, the world’s second-largest behind that of the United States, grew 6.9 percent in the first quarter, led by strong expansion at factories, Chinese officials said Monday.

China to Plant ‘Green Necklace’ of Trees Around Beijing to Fight Smog

New York Times
The pollution from the factories is responsible for much of the smog in Beijing, a city of more than 22 million, and other parts of northern China.

For China’s Factories, a Weaker Currency Is a Double-Edged Sword

Keith Bradsher
New York Times
For the past three years, China has allowed its currency, the renminbi, to weaken in value compared with the American dollar. Yet the renminbi’s slide has provided only a marginal benefit.

Trump’s Not Telling the Whole Story on Trade, China Claims

Fox News
Beijing fired back Wednesday at President Trump’s claim that the U.S. has “lost 60,000 factories” since China joined the World Trade Organization, with a top diplomat suggesting the president told only part of the story.

Features

09.15.16

China’s Teflon Toxin Problem

Sharon Lerner from Intercept
Since the late 1970s, the chemical industry has been at the heart of China’s dazzling growth. And as regulations increase around the world, many toxic chemicals wind up coming to China just to die a slow death. Teflon—the slippery substance used in...

Environment

08.29.16

Environmental Law Blunted by Crippling Court Costs

from chinadialogue
Zhenhua Ltd. is a glass-making firm based in Dezhou, a city in China’s northeastern Shandong province. The factory sits amid a cluster of modern residential areas, so when the company failed to limit its emissions of polluted air and dust into the...

Industrialization in Africa: Ethiopia Wants to Become the New ‘Made in China’

Eric Olander, Cobus van Staden & more
There’s a pretty good chance that some of the clothes you’re wearing, the shoes on your feet, and even the device you’re using to read this were made in China. Even as its economy slows, China remains the world’s factory, churning out billions of...

A Portrait of Youth and Camaraderie in China (Video)

Nadine Ajaka
Atlantic
Xiong Di, this short film by Enric Ribes and Oriol Martínez, is a beautiful ode to friendship among young factory workers in China.

China's Smog-Choked Steel City Readies For Six-Month Flower Show Shutdown

Tom Phillips
Guardian
Steel mills in Tangshan sent prices rocketing by nearly 20%, ahead of an enforced shutdown later this year.

Green Space

02.16.16

Gorging on Gadgets

Michael Zhao
Documentary filmmaker Sue Williams is finishing up her latest documentary about our beloved electronic gadgets, Death By Design. I was involved in the project and traveled with Williams to south China’s Guangdong province, to the the town of Guiyu,...

China’s Workers Stumble as Factories Stall

CHUN HAN WONG
Wall Street Journal
As factories run out of money and construction projects idle, China sees a rise in unrest.

China Will close 150 Factories to Make Sure Shanghai Disneyland Has Blue Skies

Steve Mollman
Quartz
What will Disneyland with Chinese characteristics look like?

Environment

04.16.15

Petrochemical Plant Explosion Vaporizes Government Safety Assurances

from chinadialogue
Opposing the construction of petrochemical plants making Paraxyline (PX), a key ingredient in plastic bottles and polyester clothing, has been one of the most common forms of environmental activism for China’s urban residents in the past decade.On...

Caixin Media

03.10.15

China’s Factories Are Building a Robot Nation

Every day, two quality-control supervisors monitor four robots tirelessly assembling remote-control devices for home appliances at a Midea Group factory in Foshan, in the southern province of Guangdong.The robots recently replaced 14 workers on the...

Viewpoint

02.20.15

Major China Apple Supplier Pays Workers Less Than Foxconn

Jonathan Landreth & Kevin Slaten
Apple, the world’s most beloved maker of sleek mobile phones, powerful personal computers, and slim portable music players recently reported record profits—money a new report from the New York-based nongovernmental organization China Labor Watch (...

Caixin Media

11.24.14

At Factory Waste Ponds, Fumes Choke Fantasies

Deep in the Tengger Desert, near a community of cattle herders about 700 kilometers west of Beijing, pipes from a complex of coal processing and chemical factories once spewed slimy wastewater into six ponds.The "evaporation ponds" were...

Death Toll Rises to 75 in Chinese Factory Blast

Jack Chang
Associated Press
The death toll in for an explosion at a Chinese auto parts factory has risen to 75 people, as investigators fault poor safety measures and news reports reveal that workers had long complained of dangerous levels of dust.

Death Toll Rises to 75 in Chinese Factory Blast

JACK CHANG
ABC
The death toll in for an explosion at a Chinese auto parts factory has risen to 75 people, as investigators fault poor safety measures and news reports reveal that workers had long complained of dangerous levels of dust at the facility.

Protestors Torch Factories in Southern Vietnam as China Protests Escalate

Euan McKirdy
CNN
Properties in the Vietnam-Singapore Industrial Parks (VSIP) I & II in Binh Duong were targeted by thousands of protesters demonstrating over China's deployment of an oil rig in disputed waters...

Massive China Shoe Factory Strike Rolls on as Offer Falls Flat

John Ruwitch and Danny Kwok
Reuters
Chinese shoe factory workers shrugged off an offer of improved benefits, prolonging one of the largest strikes in recent years amid signs of increased labor activism as the economy slows.

Media

01.23.14

Out of the Dark Room

Sharron Lovell
Photographers document China’s breakneck development in fractions of a second every single day. Yet the work of Chinese photojournalists remains largely unseen outside their homeland. Of the thousands of images of the country illustrating the pages...

U.S. Factories Hit by Shutdown, China Production Rises

Steven C. Johnson and Jonathan Cable
Reuters
Factories in China boosted production this month, but U.S. manufacturing output fell for the first time in four years while the euro zone economy lost momentum, surveys on Thursday showed. 

Captive U.S. Factory Executive Released

Laurie Burkitt, Xiaoqing Pi
WSJ: China Real Time Report
A U.S. executive held captive in his factory was freed on Thursday after a six-day standoff with employees. The co-owner of Florida-based Specialty Medical Supplies, who had been held hostage by workers since Friday in the...

Meet the American Factory Owner Held for Ransom in China

Peter Ford
Christian Science Monitor
Chip Starnes, the American executive who has been held hostage for six days by disgruntled workers at his factory here, finds himself in a predicament that is far from uncommon in China. His employees at Specialty Medical Supplies, fearing...

Reports

03.07.13

Between the Lines: Listening to Female Factory Workers in China

BSR
Women are crucial to China’s manufacturing sector. While women comprise more than 44% of the overall workforce, they represent about 60% of workers who migrate from rural areas to cities to work in factories. These female workers are diverse, with...

China Confronts Mounting Piles of Unsold Goods

Keith Bradsher
New York Times
After three decades of torrid growth, China is encountering an unfamiliar problem with its newly struggling economy: a huge buildup of unsold goods that is cluttering shop floors, clogging car dealerships and filling factory warehouses.