In conjunction with the Printing in Hong Kong 2012 print report (published on August 6), PW will continue to add new articles relevant to the Asian printing industry.

The Print Report:

Printing in Hong Kong 2012: The Tough Get Going

This February saw 21 provinces in China hiking their minimum wage, many by double digits. Inland provinces like Henan, Anhui, Sichuan, and Guangxi saw the largest hikes, ranging from 22% to 35%. Manufacturing hub Shenzhen, which had the biggest one-time wage hike of the past 19 years in March 2011 (20%), now has its minimum wage further increased by 14%, to 1,500 yuan (or $240) per month. (So say good-bye to the good old days of cheap Chinese labor.)

Printing in Hong Kong 2012: Projects Showcase

The numerous awe-inspiring projects adorning the production floors of Hong Kong and mainland China print suppliers always get PW itching to feature these unbelievable objects that pass for books. However, nondisclosure agreements and confidentiality clauses often play havoc with this wish. But persistence does pay off. So here are several randomly chosen outstanding projects—approved by the respective publishers for this publication—that best exemplify the suppliers’ production capabilities and innovativeness.

Ongoing Coverage:

Drupa 2012: The Fair Report

Every four years, Messe Düsseldorf, the giant trade fair grounds and organizer in Dusseldorf, Germany, plays host to Drupa, the world's biggest print media exhibition. This year's event, which ran May 3–16, attracted 1,844 exhibitors and 314,500 visitors, down from 1,971 and 391,000, respectively, in 2008. The drop is reflective of the shrinking print and graphic arts sector: in Germany and the U.S. combined, more than 11,000 printing operations have closed down in the past few years. Large delegations were few. Instead, top managers with specific investment intentions were in attendance. Foreign visitors numbered more than 190,000 (more than 60% of the total), and the 15,000-plus attendees from India form the second largest group after Germany.

More Paperwork for Toy Manufacturers

It is hard to believe but there is a new regulation out there that demands even stricter product documentation than the CPSIA (Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act) for children's products. Say hello to the 2009/48/EC Toy Safety Directive (TSD), effective July 2011, which applies to all toy manufacturers exporting to the European market.