Cambodia’s shoe factory collapse, with Japanese owners, shipping to Asian markets

An article in the Wall Street Journal (May 16,2013) describes the collapse of a building producing shoes in Cambodia for Asics, a Japanese brand, that ships primarly to Asian markets. The factory moved its production from China to Cambodia to prevent the quality and delivery issues in China. The new plant was designed to provide consistent quality, and use global labor practices. But a mezzanine floor, built on top of working employees, apparently was overloaded with inventory of cartons and paper and caused it to collapse, causing three deaths. Since a lot of the manufacturing in Cambodia is destined fro South Korean and Chinese customers, will the supply chain have the need to follow ethical practices similar to that demanded by Western consumers ? Will global supply chain configurations be expected to split based on the destination markets or will branded manufacturers be impacted by manufacturing accidents regardless of the product’s selling destination ? Should there be a worldwide commitment to ethical manufacturing, perhaps led by a United Nations like standards forming committee, or is it better left to trade associations and individual manufacturers ?

About aviyer2010

Professor
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