Latest News:  
Beijing   Sunny/Overcast    9 / 1   City Forecast

People's Daily Online>>China Business

'Chinese backyard' of Italy about to go bust (2)

By Xu Tianran (Global Times)

10:46, November 23, 2011

In the good days, when "people could still make money" a few years back, more than 90 percent of garment companies hired Italian designers and produced their own brands. A few factories even produced bags for international brands, according to Chen Hongsheng, general secretary of the Overseas Chinese Friendship Association of Prato.

At that time, a Chinese worker could make 15,000 to 30,000 euros ($20,295 to $40,590) a year, working an average of 14 to 15 hours a day, Chen told the Global Times.

"The Italians say it is a violation of regulations for working hours, but we Chinese came here to make money and we are happy to do overtime," said Zheng Xianjie, president of the Overseas Chinese Friendship Association of Prato, who estimated that about 30 percent of Italian garments came from Prato.

However, the situation today is frustrating. "The busy seasons for the garment industry run from September to December and April to July. Now all factories and workshops run at below capacity and Chinese workers are idle with nothing to do," Chen said.

Chinese immigrants began arriving in Prato about two decades ago. In the first decade, they worked for Italian companies and spent the next 10 years establishing their own businesses and Made-in-Italy brands.

Since the first Chinese from Wenzhou, Zhejiang Province, arrived in Prato in 1987, the Chinese population, two thirds of which are illegal immigrants, has increased to more than 50,000, making up 25 percent of the total population of the city. It is estimated that there are more than 3,000 Chinese garment companies and workshops in the city, according to several local Chinese sources.

【1】 【2】 【3】 【4】

We Recommend


Related Reading

Leave your comment0 comments

  1. Name


Selections for you

  1. Est-Ouest Auction 2011 Autumn Sale to be held

  2. Children's folk music base founded

  3. Children experience new school bus

  4. Armed police bid farewell to retiring dogs

Most Popular


  1. Return to reason for real estate
  2. A reality check for Washington
  3. Improving education quality in rural areas
  4. Further healthcare reform
  5. Cyber cooperation needed
  6. Asia has no time for games with US
  7. Japanese drills should raise red flags for China
  8. Money culture pulls well-off teens into sex trade
  9. US scaremongering
  10. Asians no longer go under the knife to look 'white'

What's happening in China

Final shot as popular studio to shut down

  1. Macao residents hit jackpot with gov't subsidies
  2. China sets up emergency alert publishing system
  3. PLA establishes strategic planning department
  4. Schools offer lessons for a happy marriage
  5. Smaller units to supervise railways

PD Online Data

  1. The lion dance in Guangzhou
  2. The flower fair in Guangzhou
  3. Lion dances pay New Year calls in Guilin
  4. Jiangsu´s special New Year traditions
  5. Hakka traditions in Spring Festival