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Making it ethically in China – A practical guide for fashion and textile designers
When: 28.10.09 at 18:00
Where: Asia House, 63 New Cavendish Street, London , W1G 7LP

Sourcing materials or manufacturing in China should be considered seriously if you want to compete in a global market and keep production cost low. Many do not think that China should be your first port of call if you have decided to build your brand on a sustainable business model in which worker's rights are recognised, the materials used are environmentally friendly and your carbon footprint is as small as possible. However, China has started to acknowledge the need for sustainable business practices in the production of textiles and clothing, and has set up the Sustainable Fashion Business Consortium in Hong Kong in 2008 to promote just that.

Own-it, Ethical Fashion Forum and Creative Connexions have invited a panel of experts to discuss the current situation in China, how designers can source manufacturers and material that meets their ethical standards and how they can monitor compliance. A lawyer will speak about important clauses in manufacturing or licensing contracts concerning IP rights and confidentiality, as well as what to do when you are faced with counterfeits that are cheap, unethically sourced and damage your good name.

Presentations will take place from 6-8pm followed by drinks and networking until 9pm.

This event is being organised by Own-it in partnership with Ethical Fashion Forum, Creative Connexions and UAL Ventures.

UAL Ventures is a private company with office space at University of the Arts in London. Creative Connexions is based there with another office in Hong Kong. They have declined to provide a set of accounts, but a freedom of information request may explain. Their web site offers introductions, research an training, translation and help in planning for UK firms trying to do business in China. There is an initial deposit and then a 15% cut on any contract signed. The examples given are of designers selling design skills to companies in China.

Most of the "experts" are intellectual property lawyers talking about own-it's usual subject but the chair for the day is Claire Lissaman who ought to be interested because she works in social responsibility auditing on a Chinese visa for corporate clients like Nike. Or maybe that doesn't follow.

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