CHINA: GARMENT MAKER CRYSTAL GROUP (HK) BACKS HUMANS OVER ROBOTS
Crystal Group, the Hong Kong-based garment manufacturer, has vehemently supported humans over robots.
The company intends to increase its working staff by over 10 per cent in Vietnam and Bangladesh going forward to endorse its concept of humans being more costeffective than sewing robots. The move by Crystal Group has come at a time when the industry is moving towards automation.
The garment manufacturer also believes that technological innovations such as Sewbot are good but it’s too early for them to challenge humans, especially in the low-cost nations. Palaniswamy Rajan, Chief Executive, Softwear Automation too believes that though Softwear’s creation, Sewbot is the future of the industry, it is not costcompetitive vis-a-vis humans, especially in countries like Vietnam. The company soon plans to launch its first automated T-shirt production lines in the USA.
Further, the apparel firm, which had recently raised US $ 490 million in Initial Public Offering (IPO) in Hong Kong, hopes that countries like Vietnam will continue to witness huge growth due to several companies rapidly moving away from China, owing to the increasing cost of production. Crystal Group intends to use the IPO earnings in setting up fabric production facilities in manufacturing hubs like Vietnam and Bangladesh. Notably, labour wage in southern China has crossed US $ 700 per month, which is much higher than that in Vietnam (US $ 300-350) and Bangladesh (US $ 150-200).
It is worth mentioning here that Crystal Group was one of the largest apparel producers in the world last year (by volume).
The company intends to increase its working staff by over 10 per cent in Vietnam and Bangladesh