October 04, 2003


I have noticed that Chinese goods are slowly taking over the dominance among all other imported consumer goods in Bangladesh. I don't know what's the extent of this invasion in other countries, but its a big impact in our country. Let me cite you some examples:

A couple of years ago our consumer electronics market was wholly dominated by the Japanese brands with their goods assembled from plants in Thailand & in Malaysia. One 21" color TV did cost appx. Tk. 27,000 ($450). Then came the Chinese TV. They started with selling one 21" color TV at Tk. 12,000 ($200) in 2001-2002 which is within reach of many middle class consumers. They are also giving a 5 years warranty. The quality of the TV is above average and given the low price & warranty is an easy pick for everybody. And you can find a large variety of Chinese consumer goods. Now the consumer electronics goods in the country is wholly dominated by the Chinese brands and you can find goods at very cheap rate you would not imagine. The other players have downgraded their price to avg. Tk. 21,000 ($350) and still cannot compete.

The children toys market is dominated by the Chinese goods. I remember, when I was a kid, a remote controlled toy car was a dream for me which was so expensive that my father had to wait a couple of years to purchase it after he promised me. Now these cars are well within the reach of middle class.

There are invasions of Chinese goods in other areas also - the shoes market, automobiles, Bicycles (Kids Bicycles produced in India costs $25 C&F but from China you can get at $14 C&F) and what not.

This is making a big impact on the local producers. They are finding it tough to get by. There are many anti-dumping laws and other measures prevalent in the world to prevent this invasion. But my question is if a middle class consumer gets a $450 TV at $200 would he support prevention of Chinese goods which was otherwise not been possible?


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