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Buy an umbrella anywhere in the world and the chances are that it was made in Songxia. But could this Chinese manufacturing hub now lose its crown to a cheaper foreign rival?

Buy an umbrella anywhere in the world and the chances are that it was made in Songxia. But could this Chinese manufacturing hub now lose its crown to a cheaper foreign rival?

Ed Butler visits the Tianwei umbrella factory, one of dozens in the town, speaks to the employees. And he asks the boss, Justin Jia, whether he frets about the rising wages of his workers and the threat from low-cost Vietnam or Indonesia. Meanwhile economic historian Robert Allen of New York University warns that China's loss of its competitive edge could see it follow the US and Britain on the path to de-industrialisation.

(Picture: Factory worker at the Tianwei umbrella factory in Songxia, China; Credit: BBC)

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18 minutes

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Thu 30 Nov 2017 08:32GMT

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