Anti-China rhetoric has reduced the attractiveness of made-in-China products among Indian customers, a follow-up survey by LocalCircles, a community social media platform, has found.
As against 48 per cent of the respondents who had chosen Chinese products last November, only 29 per cent said they purchased made-in-China products during this festival season.
Of the 7,452 responses received this year, 71 per cent said they consciously chose not to buy a Chinese product, indicating a 40 per cent dent in customer preference in one year's time.
The survey also revealed that Indians prefer value for money purchase. Of the 6,722 people who chose to explain why they chose a Chinese product, 66 per cent said they did it as the products offered higher value for money. While 13 per cent stated "uniqueness", 25 per cent did not have a clear answer.
"With earnings being impacted for many households this year due to the pandemic, buying the lowest cost product was not a choice but the only option for many," LocalCircles stated.
The survey also revealed that most consumers perceive the Indian counterpart for a Chinese product to be more expensive, though of better quality.
However, the quality was not the key for many festival-related items like LED lighting, tealight candles, plastics, etc. as they are considered one-time-use products. For other products like mobile phones, air purifiers, gadgets, and appliances, consumers have reported China-made products to be equal or better in quality, the survey noted.
The takeaway, LocalCircles said, is that the Centre and MSMEs should make manufacturing more competitive in India and improve scale.
"If the high-quality products that are made in India can be produced at scale and cost of capital for Indian MSME is reduced through government support, products made in India will definitely find preference amongst Indian consumers and even other retail markets around the world," the community social media platform indicated.
The survey saw over 14,000 responses received from residents spread across 204 districts in India, 66 per cent of whom were men, and 48 per cent were from tier 1 cities.