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The Chinese New Year of 2018 starts on February 16th, and lasts until March 2nd. While many of us who work in Asia are painfully aware of the Chinese New Year, and the coming disruption to all production, many Importers are caught completely off guard.
As if the rush to get your shipments in time for Christmas is not enough, you now have to make sure that your goods are ready well before your supplier close the shop for CNY 2018. During this holiday, all factories are shut down. Without exception.
While the official holiday only lasts for around a week to ten days, most factories are closed for an entire month. With severe delays to be expected once they open up again in March.
This time is especially risky for products that are due for shipment in the spring and summer season. Think swimwear and outdoor furniture.
Now is the time to prepare, and in this article, I will explain how you can avoid delayed shipments and quality issues during the Chinese New Year of 2018.
1. No New Orders Accepted. Mass Production and Sample Development is Halted One to Two Weeks Before the Chinese New Years Eve.
While the Chinese New Year Eve is set on January 16th, 2018, all suppliers start to wind down operations one to two weeks in advance.
As such, the CNY puts a halt to mass production, and even sample orders, far earlier than many buyers anticipate. This is not always in your suppliers direct control.
One component and materials subcontractor closing doors a few days earlier can essentially result in an unexpected, and early, shutdown of the supply chain.
This partly explains why different companies close their doors on different dates. Get a confirmation on their schedule well in advance to prevent delayed orders.
However, administrative functions tend to be operational a week or two longer, than the production lines. As such, you can, at least, save some of the runways on sample development and contract negotiations, that may take place at this time.
2. Production is Halted for At Least Two Weeks After the Chinese New Year Eve
While the official holiday is only lasting for roughly 5 working days, plus two weekends, most workers remain in their home provinces for an extra week or two.
This explains why most suppliers are not back in business until two, sometimes even three, weeks after the Chinese New Years Eve.
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