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在线翻译:
szdaily -> World Economy -> 
‘Made in Cambodia’ may become new fashion label with US tariffs hitting China
    2018-08-28  08:53    Shenzhen Daily

THE next designer handbag you buy is less likely to bear a “made in China” label.

Fashion companies, eager to diversify their supply chains, were already expanding into production sites in Southeast Asia as alternatives to China. Then the trade war happened.

Now, with tariffs on products such as Chinese handbags set to rise, nations like Cambodia and Vietnam are looking more attractive than ever for consumer goods makers such as Steven Madden Ltd. and Tapestry Inc.’s Coach. And while the Trump administration has slapped duties on goods from many of its largest trading partners this year, it’s allowed some Cambodian products to continue duty free access to the U.S. market.

“The shift has been under way,” said Steve Lamar, executive vice president of American Apparel & Footwear Association. The talk of tariffs has created “a lot of anxiety” and companies are gauging how fast they can make more changes to their sourcing, he said.

A study released in July by the U.S. Fashion Industry Association showed that, while all of the companies participating in the survey sourced goods from China, 67 percent expected to decrease the value or volume of production in the country over the next two years. U.S. trade protectionism was listed as the number one challenge for the industry.

Steven Madden chief executive officer Edward Rosenfeld said on the company’s most recent earnings call that it has been shifting production of its handbags to Cambodia from China. The maker of shoes and accessories sees 15 percent of its handbags coming from Cambodia this year, with this percentage doubling in 2019.

“That gives us frankly about a three-year headstart on most of our peers, because many folks are just now trying to make that move,” Rosenfeld said. “Our head of handbag sourcing is actually over there right now, working on a plan to ramp that up.”

Tapestry, the luxury company behind Coach and Kate Spade handbags, has adopted a similar strategy, boosting its Vietnamese production and leaving less than 5 percent of its sourcing from China. Vera Bradley, meanwhile, mentioned last December it is looking at sending manufacturing operations to Cambodia and Vietnam from China.

“Cambodia does offer pretty good investment incentives like tax holidays,” said Matt van Roosmalen, country manager for Cambodia at Emerging Markets Consulting, an investment advisory firm. “As long as the tariff exemptions persist, companies will be more incentivized to invest production capacity in Cambodia.”

The moves to shift production have had an impact in China: Hong Kong-based Stella International Holdings Ltd., which develops and manufactures footwear for brands like Prada SpA and Guess Inc., has seen its stock drop to its lowest point since 2009 as the United States started a trade war against China.

Cambodia footwear exports rose 25 percent in 2017, while garment exports increased 8 percent, according to an annual report by the National Bank of Cambodia, which attributed the growth in part to increased demand from the United States. (SD-Agencies)

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