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Invisible Gold in Asia by David Llewelyn

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Household appliances

The Haier Group is China’s largest manufacturer of household appliances. Although officially incorporated in 1984, Haier can trace its origins to 1955 when a group of people formed a handicraft-producers’ cooperative. In 1979, it was named Qingdao Home Appliance Factory and by that time was manufacturing washing machines. Although the company switched to the more profitable refrigerator business in 1984 and was renamed Qingdao General Refrigerator Factory, the factory, employing about 800 people, was almost bankrupt by the end of that year.

Zhang Ruimin, a former bureaucrat in the municipal government, was appointed director by the Qingdao Municipal Governmental Household Appliance Division and proceeded to turn the losses ...

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