|China accounted for approximately
30 percent of the world's output of children's wear in 2004. The
elimination of quotas resulted in a 30 percent surge in exports
in the first four months of 2005. However, it has also brought enormous
challenges to the industry, threatening to hinder growth.
After the two largest markets for China-made children's wear,
the US and the EU, imposed safeguards on various types of apparel,
China suppliers have had to explore other options to stay in business.
Small companies producing low-end apparel have been the worst hit,
as many of them work on thin profit margins and do not have the
resources to survive.
|The following are some of the
key trends and issues we see in China's children's wear
|Many makers are trying to boost exports
to other regions, such as Japan and the Middle East, in
view of the US and EU restrictions. Some large companies
are even moving production to other regions in Asia or re-exporting
via other countries.
|Some suppliers producing low-end, high-volume
garments are moving up the value chain, focusing on the
production of midrange and high-end apparel. They are increasing
investments in design capability to be able to offer more
|Even with increasing production expenses
due to rising material costs, the export tax and labor shortage,
most suppliers will be keeping prices stable in the next
|Schoolchildren's apparel will continue
to dominate children's wear exports from China, followed
by toddlers' apparel.
Suppliers offer a range of styles in both these categories, mainly
because designs now follow adult clothing trends. Suppliers in China
export four categories of children's wear
newborns' clothing, babywear, toddlers' apparel and schoolchildren's
apparel. These are also the scope of this report.
Almost all children's wear manufacturers produce apparel for
schoolchildren, and there are some that specialize in the line.
More than 75 percent of suppliers featured in this report produce
all four categories of children's wear for export, and almost 30
percent have schoolchildren's clothing as their main line.
The Products & Prices section in this report discusses the
main features of each category of children's wear and its price
ranges. It also explains the differences among low-end, midrange
and high-end models in each product category.
Product development and design focus are discussed in the R&D/design
section, while the Materials & Components module details the
main types of fabric and accessories used by China makers.
The Manufacturing section lists the key steps in children's wear
production and how these differ in small, midsize and large companies.
The majority of children's wear companies in China are locally
owned, while a few are foreign-owned. Reflecting this structure,
76 percent of suppliers featured in this report are private locally
owned, while 23 percent are private foreign-owned or invested.
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