In a few years, ready-made garments may become synonymous with a burgeoning Chinese production line. The Made in China tag is likely to take over half of the world textile market, leaving poorer garment producers like Thailand, Sri Lanka, the Philippines, Cambodia and Bangladesh struggling in a new, quota free world. However far reaching and devastating their impact may be on millions across the developing world, the global trade agreements and quota restrictions behind these changes seldom have a direct impact on the lives of the average western consumer.
Bangladesh: Cheap but not Cheerful
By the middle of the year, the keen shopper might notice that inexpensive High Street brands like H&M or those touting a young, trendy lifestyle like Gap, suddenly don’t sell Made in Bangladesh clothes anymore. And surprisingly these mass-produced brands may cost far less.