Home – New Forums Other discussions The importance of keeping it local

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  • #1134852
    Cjay
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    bridiej, post: 153993 wrote:
    Goods being more expensive than elsewhere is already a reality in Australia.

    Look at the cost of books. A few years ago my mum bought me the Twilight book for my birthday (hangs head in shame). She paid $25 from local bookstore. Check out Amazon, less than £5 – even with their small delivery charge it was a fraction of the cost of buying it in town.

    And yesterday my neighbour told us a friend had bought her daughter a new pair of shoes which apparently cost over $100 here for just $25 from Bali (and they’re originals, not copies).

    I can see where you’re coming from and, as I said before, I’m not advocating buying 100% Australian all the time, but we’re already paying over the odds so I’m not sure I agree with your point.

    Exactly, nothing wrong with a good healthy debate :)

    Tell me about it. I’m in SE Asia right now, picking genuines up drastically cheaper across the board.

    Just can’t seem to find Hugo Boss around here. :/ Musn’t be popular in the East.

    You do realise why books etc cost so much here, right? Government regulations upping the price to ‘keep australian’s employed’. Same reason why a BMW cost so much more here than overseas, to keep people buying Holdens. Protectionist views hold us to ransom.

    That is the problem with protectionism. If we truly integrated as a global market, we would have MORE expendable income to spend on products and services, than being jacked for what few we can afford now. More money to pay for restaurants, dance lessons, manicures, furniture, new cars, holidays, you name it. More spread, more wealth for all.

    Australians can achieve much higher things than working in a factory.

    #1134853
    Zava Design
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    bridiej, post: 153994 wrote:
    lol no, nothing wrong with my business model thank you
    So you do believe in an open, global market then?? I’m confused now (which can happen easily ;) ).

    My husband did indeed retrain as an electrician. Then we emigrated and he was told, despite having his qualification, he’d have to be a mature apprentice and live off $15 an hour for the best part of four years. So yes, it’s a nice thought but in reality, unless you have vast savings to keep you afloat, it’s not a possibility.

    The likelihood of losing your home is doing it tough in my view. And that’s a sad reality for some of the guys my husband works with.

    I have never heard of anyone in Australia dying of starvation, outside of a few poor individuals with mental health issues perhaps. And if you’re really holding up potentially losing a home that someone was rich enough in the first place to purchase, well, I think a little global perspective would be a good thing for our society as a whole. A few less digital playthings, and renting for life rather than buying (which is the norm for much of the planet) isn’t really going to hurt anyone.

    Australia is a thriving country, with record salaries, low unemployment, and social services that provide some form of basic living level for every single citizen, something which can’t be said for the majority of the planet.

    But this thread has actually re-awakened my desire to help out in places that need it a little more than we do, so now have a germ of an idea based around the “buy locally from global community/small businesses…”. Now just need a little time… :)

    #1134854
    Johny
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    I could not agree more we should be buying local whenever possible, and if you can start of local in your own suburb and work out from there even better.

    Even better support the small players over the larger entities such as Bunnings, Coles, Woolworths, BP, Target, Aldi.

    Get into your local community seek out the small family businesses and support them first, seek out new designers looking for a shoulder to hang their clothes on.

    Independent green grocers, hardware stores, mechanics beauty salons and more.

    Support your own back yard.

    So sort of like going back to living in the 50’s and 60’s.

    Well no it is not the tangent.

    If you support local the local business and economy has more revenue, if the business is more profitable it can afford to tool up, if it can tool up it can continue to manufacture locally.

    The essence of local support is sustainability of the immediate local economy so no it is not a tangent to the main OP it directly relates to the OP.

    If people do not support the local business or take the position that the few extra £is not worth it, then she will either have to look offshore or close down.

    The problem here is that none of the industries mentioned are in manufacturing. They are also retailing products that mostly originate from os as well.

    The business mentioned in the original post is not one that you would desribe as typical anyway. The owner has identified a niche or hole in the market and exploited that. Good on her, but her business could not be compared to a manufacturer making mass produced product, unless of course ladies do regularly spend the equivalent of GBP 15.00 on a pair of knickers. I may be corrected on that point.

    Regardless of views on slave labour, bad conditions etc., there is a reason why developing countries have large manufacturing bases. They have plenty of cheap labour, but this also allows them to manufacture with economies of scale to make products for sale worldwide.

    And for every large company that has their products produced overseas, that bottom line is very important to the “local” investors who want the highest return they can get. Accepting lower would be the equivalent of walking into the local bank and saying “I know your term deposit rate is 3%, but please just offer me 2%”. Not going to happen.

    Australians can achieve much higher things than working in a factory.

    This to me is what sums up this topic. Manufacturing jobs are generally lower paying jobs with little scope for advancement compared to those in say the service industries. Developed countries push for those service industries because the people in those countries demand higher wages, better prospects , a second car as well as a TV in each room.

    If you look at a country like China, deemed the “worlds factory”, even they talk about trying to move away from low cost manufacturing and building up both their own brands as well as establishing service industries. This will take a long time, but even now it is clear that people are starting to look at other destinations for manufacturing some products, like Vietnam, Bangladesh etc.

    As a good example, if you look at an iphone. I’m not sure of the going price but say it is USD600.00. The parts come from all over the world, but the product is manufactured in China. The manufacturing side accounts for less than 10% of the cost benefit, as the vast majority of the profit goes into the hands of the people who do none of the manufacturing…the brand owner.

    My father owned a company that manufactured farm equipment, when I left school I worked for a while in manufacturing. I have a lot of respect for the hard work done within that industry and I also believe there is a place for some manufacturing to be local….where it proves to be a better option than other alternatives and can be sustained.

    But I don’t want my kid to grow up, finish uni and get a job as the head of the button hole stitching department at the local shirt factory. Much better if she learns the skills that will allow her to have a much broader experience and opportunities.

    I would even say that many of the “we should buy locally’ proponents are actually undermining what should be a push by Australian companies to promote themselves and their products overseas.

    To go back to being a country of manufacturers would be going backwards.

    Perhaps if the wine industry had only supplied locally, the small local bottleshops would still be selling a couple of reds and a white from the Barossa Valley. Instead they now produce a wide selection of some of the best wines in the world. This would not have happened without looking beyond the local market.

    As for people doing it tough, I see those mining magnates who have made billions, have pushed for and succeeded in arranging Enterprise Migration Agreements, which allows the import of foreign labour (at no doubt cheaper rates of payment) as “skilled” labour at their vast mining projects. These agreements should be based on not having enough local workers to complete the projects, but I haven’t heard so many complaints about all this. Forget about buying local, these guys don’t even want to hire locally, and the govt seems happy to oblige.

    #1134855
    Zava Design
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    Johny, post: 154024 wrote:
    To go back to being a country of manufacturers would be going backwards.
    Couldn’t agree more.
    #1134857
    Zava Design
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    Scrooge, post: 154048 wrote:
    I am so surprised at seemingly intelligent people completely don’t understand or are so hell bent on how great offshore and third world manufacturing is that they really do not fully understand the impact on business and countries for that matter.
    And I’m so surprised at seemingly intelligent people who don’t realise what a negative impact an isolationist type policy would have on our society & economy, shown by countless examples over recent history, Argentina being just one.

    I don’t understand how this thread has turned into what it has from an OP that simply showed a local business, supporting local and making their local community better. Sort of flies in the face of all the globalisation bull sprouted here.

    No, the OP posted an item about a great community business idea in the UK. Others decided to run with the “buy local” mantra rather than comment on the actual business posted.

    And rather than blaming me for supposedly turning this debate aggressive, why not look in the mirror at the language you’re choosing to use (which I’ve mirrored at the top of this post, “seemingly intelligent people”)? If you can’t handle folk challenging your viewpoint, and asking you to justify it, then a public forum on business ideas is not your ideal hangout. If you’re after a forum where the only response to an idea that someone disagrees with is an “Oh that’s lovely” and a smiley face, check out the local kindergarten forum. Though I hear they’re being encouraged to engage in good, robust debates nowadays too. ;)

    Peace out.

    #1134859
    Zava Design
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    You still seem to have completely side stepped the examples of countries that do/have practised isolationist policies. Can you put forward one example where this kind of practice has worked over any length of time? Just one.

    And I also question some of your supposed facts, when one major one is incorrect:

    Child labour usage increased growth factor over 300% and increased human trafficking

    According to figures I can find (including the UN amongst others) child labour has fallen over the past couple of decades, and is continuing to do so. Still a long way to go, but I would suggest that this trend has been assisted by globalisation and communication, increasing opportunities for parents to earn an income, along with improved access to education for children, and will continue to be so.

    And this:

    Local IT industries decimated with outsourcing to India and China affected not only IT but science, accountancy and middle management

    I’ve been working in IT for 15 years. Just about everyone I know from this time tells me business is booming. There’s certainly been a change in focus, simpler low skilled jobs can be outsourced, enabling local better educated workers to aim for higher level positions and tasks. Not much different from the industrial revolution really, which got many people out of the factories and able to aim for better jobs. (I’m wondering if you would have complained about that “technology” at the time?)

    As I said this topic is far too great for a forum, but to simplify common sense dictates removing jobs from a local economy can only do harm.

    Not if they’re being replaced by better paying jobs, which is in fact what has occurred. If not, why have unemployment rates in Australia fallen over the past 30 years?? From around 10% to around 5. And US unemployment rates are about the same as they were 30 years ago.

    I’m wondering what other “facts” you might have wrong that could be clouding your judgement?

    #1134861
    Zava Design
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    Well let’s put aside for the moment whether someone should have more faith in stats from the UN or the “National Statistics Office” from the Philippines (who I’ve never heard of)…

    Their claim: 30% increase in child labour cases over 10 years.

    During this time there were – on UN estimates – an average of 2.3 millions births a year, so with a population of around 90 million, that’s a population increase of around 25%. Gives a little more perspective to that 30% figure, no?

    Plus, “increase in child-labor cases”, do you have a source on what that means exactly? Sounds like it’s cases that have come to the attention of officials. Were they as vigilant a decade ago in seeking out and reporting? Would need that info to validate this figure.

    Plus, that’s one country’s (questionable) data. If it’s not reflected globally then it would seem ingenious to blame a global factor as a causal influence.

    No one is claiming that child labour is not still an issue. But by most of the more reputable sources, it has dropped over the past 3 decades. And from personal experience of spending a number of years in a few of the places where child labour is an issue, and working on NGO projects targeting these types of kids and their families, my anecdotal evidence backs this up. Thanks to increasing opportunities afforded by technological and communication advances, there are far more opportunities for both employment and education that is slowly making a positive change for the most part.



    And in the meantime, you’ve still chosen to ignore my request for one – just ONE – example of a country where an isolationist model has had a positive impact. If you can’t produce an example, then it really makes any other debate over the other effects of globalisation a moot point.
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