Sunday, June 21, 2009

Mobile phones: The ban on certain Chinese handsets is allegedly to help domestic market players

[TOI] The ban on import of mobile phones and toys made in China seems to have rubbed the retailers and sellers in the city the wrong way. While
one of the phone sellers, speaking to TOI, claimed that this was nothing more than a corporate strategy on the part of the mobile phone bigwigs to monopolise the market, sellers of Chinese toys were not even ready to talk about the wares they were putting up for the public to purchase.

Slamming certain sections of media for inaccurate reporting, a mobile phone dealer, who preferred to be called Ashish, said, "The ban may stop the influx of Chinese mobile phones in the country, but it will definitely not affect our sales figures. It will only narrow down the options available to the customers."

"The cheaper Chinese phones had gained quick popularity with Indian consumers and their entry into the mobile phone market had led to a decrease in the business of top manufacturers by approximately 30%. The ban will only ensure that the top mobile companies edge out their cheaper competition from the market," he added.

Ashish also rubbished the argument that China-made phones lack the required International Mobile Equipment Identity (IMEI) numbers. "The phones tagged as Sony Ericsson are actually manufactured by a China-based company called Sagem," he informed. Citing the example of blasts in the BL - 5C series of Nokia phone batteries, he said that health related hazards were common to any type of mobile phones.

Meanwhile, sellers of China-made toys in the city were not even ready to talk about the ban. This may be a direct fallout of the fact that several batches of toys made in China had been withdrawn from the USA as well as several European nations, primarily because of high contents of toxic or harmful materials in them. However, a trip to the city market revealed that they were being openly sold here.

Then again, sellers of other China-made products in the city have been known to endorse them because, in many cases, household items and toys manufactured there are cheaper than those made in India, and of a superior quality as well!

'Ban on Chinese made goods a corporate strategy'

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