Production relocation of Yangtzekiang Garment Mfrs in 1980s and 1990s

Hong Kong's garment manufacturing industry reached its peak in the 1970s and 1980s. In that period, S.K. Chan worked with Lam Kan-shing in Hong Kong Garment Manufacturers Union, where he had held office of Vice-president and President successively for over a decade. In 1980, Yangtzekiang invested in a cotton mill in Wuxi, Jiangsu. Quite a number of senior government officials of Hong Kong and China paid visits to the mill. The mill comprised of departments of spinning, weaving and sewing . They produced fine yarns that were mainly supplied to other factories. There were 800 thousand spindles in Hong Kong when its spinning industry was in full bloom. Today, the Wuxi cotton mill already had 500 thousand spindles. In the mid and late 1980s, the USA tightened her quota restrictions on Hong Kong's garments. Yangtzekiang once set up factories in places like Cambodia, Burma, Malaysia and Sri Lanka in order to evade quota restrictions imposed by the USA. In 1990, Yangtzekiang acquired the Hong Kong Knitters Limited, a subsidiary of the Hong Kong Spinners, and started making knitted garments. Before that Yangtzekiang made only woven garments and had to outsource their knitted garments. A few months after the acquisition, Yangtzekiang moved the production lines owned by the Hong Kong Knitters Limited to Panyu, Guangdong. At that moment, mainland China managed to acquire import quotas of garments from the USA, which attracted S.K. Chan to move his garment production to the mainland. Prior to its acquisition by Yangtzekiang, Hong Kong Knitters Limited, a fully owned subsidiary of Hong Kong Knitters, had already adopted one-stop production by weaving, dyeing and manufacturing garments at the same time. Its products were mainly for export and its clients included big brandnames like Burberry. Now a lot of Yangtzekiang's clients are companies with famous brandnames such as Nike, Hugo Boss and Marc Jacobs. But S.K. Chan sighed that businesses are in a plight now due to the rise in production cost.

Company Yangtzekiang Garment Limited
Subject Industry
Duration 10m52s
Language Cantonese
Material Type
Source Hong Kong Memory Project Oral History Interview
Repository Hong Kong Memory Project
Note to Copyright Copyright owned by Hong Kong Memory Project
Accession No. LKF-CSK-SEG-004
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