In the News

Next Chinese Export: Inflation

International Herald Tribune (France)

By Matthew Benjamin and Nerys Avery Bloomberg News

BEIJING Rising production costs in China might soon turn the smiley- faced Wal-Mart logo on that rack of $7 cardigan sweaters into a frown.

Higher wages and new environmental regulations, along with higher raw- materials prices, are pushing up the costs of manufacturing in China. That will lead to higher prices for the clothing, toys, electronics and other products the nation exports, said economists, manufacturers and others involved in the China trade.

Retailers see all their activities through green filter ETHICAL CONSUMERS

Financial Times

Supermarkets and clothes chains alike have realised that shoppers view the ethics of sustainability and ecological responsibility as core to their buying decisions, writes Elizabeth Rigby

By Elizabeth Rigby

When Sir Terry Leahy stood up in May and declared that Tesco, the UK supermarkets group of which he is chief executive, was putting local and ethical sourcing, recycling and greener energy production at the heart of its corporate culture, the retail world's ears pricked up.

Democrats Mark DeLay's Exit by Targeting Island Manufacturers

LA Times

The Texas Republican had blocked earlier efforts to raise wages in the Northern Marianas, reportedly on lobbyist Jack Abramoff's behalf.

By Walter F. Roche

WASHINGTON — Billing it as a fitting "going-away present" for Rep. Tom DeLay (R-Texas), three Democratic House members Wednesday filed a bill to raise the minimum wage in the Northern Marianas and tighten immigration standards for the U.S. territory, which critics say has become a haven for apparel industry sweatshops.

In Praise of the Maligned Sweatshop

The New York Times

By Nicholas D. Kristof


Africa desperately needs Western help in the form of schools, clinics and sweatshops.

Oops, don't spill your coffee. We in the West mostly despise sweatshops as exploiters of the poor, while the poor themselves tend to see sweatshops as opportunities.

On a street here in the capital of Namibia, in the southwestern corner of Africa, I spoke to a group of young men who were trying to get hired as day laborers on construction sites.