Made in China (The Big Smoke)

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Sociopolitical Documentary hosted by Stephen McDonell, published by ABC broadcasted as part of ABC Foreign Correspondent series in 2009 - English narration

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Image: Made-in-China-Cover.jpg

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Made in China (aka The Big Smoke) Broadcast: 24/03/2009 Reporter: Stephen McDonell

China's exponential growth took Australia along for the white-knuckled ride. It fuelled our resources boom and had economic optimists forecasting decades of good times. How things change.

Twenty million Chinese migrant workers have lost their jobs in the past six months as a result of the global recession. As demand for products made in China drops, so do the living standards of millions of Chinese who have been lifted out of poverty as a result of the market reforms of the past few decades.

China correspondent Stephen McDonell travels with some of the country's blue collar factory workers as they leave their farms to look for work in the city.

They take an epic train journey from their remote village in the north of the country, to the industrial heartland of the south - the Pearl River delta, also known as the 'world's factory'.

Ironically, things had been looking up for the migrant workers until the financial tsunami hit late last year. Faced with a growing middle class and increasing worker unrest due to exploitation by unscrupulous employers, the Chinese government had introduced tougher labour laws giving workers greater rights.

Now employers are saying that in the current economic climate, they can't afford to implement them. However, concerns about social unrest in the face of growing unemployment means the labour laws will probably remain in place.

There's no question that China is experiencing a slow down - the big question is how slow, and how down? Australian workers are hoping that while twenty million Chinese have lost their jobs, some of ours will be saved by the fact that the world's factory will continue to churn out products made in China.

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[edit] Technical Specs

  • Duration: 27mn 35s
  • Filesize: 828 MiB
  • Format: Matroska
  • Video Codec: x264 core 93 r1542 5b86182
  • Video Bitrate: 4 000 Kbps
  • Video Resolution: 1232 x 704
  • Video Aspect Ratio: 16:9
  • Frames Per Second: 50.000
  • Bits-(Pixel*Frame) 0.092
  • Audio Codec: AC3
  • Audio Bitrate: 192 kb/s 48KHz
  • Audio Channels: 2
  • Audio language: English
  • Subtitles: English
  • Source: DVB-T
  • Capture: DVBViewer
  • Demuxer: ProjectX
  • Encoder: Avidemux 2.5.3
  • SubMux: MKVMerge

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