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Manufacturers shift focus from quantity to quality

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An employee works at a Chinese garment factory that exports products to Europe, in Hefei, Anhui Province, on Jan. 19.   © Reuters

BEIJING -- Wages have continued to rise in China even amid the recent economic slowdown. Labor costs have nearly doubled in the manufacturing sector over the past five years. As the minimum wage is set to jump 20% in Guangdong Province, a global manufacturing hub, foreign companies are moving their production to Vietnam and other emerging Asian countries in pursuit of lower labor costs.

     At the National People's Congress, opened on March 5, Chinese Premier Li Keqiang identified manufacturing as an area of strength and stressed the need to "upgrade China from a manufacturer of quantity to one of quality."

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