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Products made in China often cost more there than in the West

Posted by Author on July 13, 2010

By David Pierson, Los Angeles Times, July 13, 2010-

Reporting from Beijing
— The laptop computer Luo Guangli carried out of the Apple flagship store in Beijing was no different from the models sold in the United States. It had the same high-resolution screen, an identical processor and the same printed label on the back: “Assembled in China.”

The only difference — besides a manual written in Chinese — was the price. Luo paid $2,760. That’s about $460, or 20%, more than an American buyer would spend at an Apple store or buying it online.

“It’s a huge expense, but what can I do?” said Luo, a 24-year-old professional photographer who wears glasses with Buddy Holly frames.

The premium prices aren’t limited to foreign-branded computers. Kobe Bryant’s Nike sneakers with the Made in China label go for $165 in the U.S. But at an official Nike store in China? $190. A flat-screen Sony TV assembled by Chinese laborers runs about $800 at a Best Buy store in the U.S. But you’d pay 30% more at the popular Chinese appliance chain Gome. The same goes for that Maclaren Techno XT infant stroller. It’s also manufactured here, but you’ll typically pay 40% more for one at a Beijing mall than you would in the U.S.

It’s a paradox of life here in the world’s factory floor. The place known for delivering low-cost goods to Western consumers doesn’t always do the same for its own people……. (more details from Los Angeles Times)

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