Why do European countries source products from Asia?

To those who are new to the world of product sourcing, the thought of a business in Europe sourcing items from Asia, when they could just source locally instead, must seem bizarre. That’s like flying to the other side of the world because you are craving a burger when there’s a restaurant down the road from you.

So, why do European countries source products from Asia? There has to be a rather compelling reason? In this article, we’ll tell you everything you need to know.

The unbeatable benefits of product sourcing from Asia

There are a number of reasons why European countries choose to source their products from Asia. Here are some of the primary advantages that you can gain:

1.      Up and coming economies

Asia is home to some of the largest economies in the world that doesn’t look as though it is going to change any time soon. In fact, many countries like Thailand, Vietnam, and the Philippines (to name a few) have been experiencing an impressive amount of economic growth. This is creating some amazing opportunities for European businesses to source products overseas for the benefit of their business…such as:

2.      Specialised products

Many European businesses choose to source their products from Asia because of the attractive specialisation benefits. In other words, there are certain Asian countries that specialise in manufacturing certain items better than anyone else in the world. For example: China and Hong Kong have long been recognised as manufacturing the finest electronic products in the world, just as India is recognised for producing exceptional garments at competitively low prices.

So, if there is a specific type of product that you need and you’d like only the finest, often you need to look overseas to satisfy your requirements. 

3.      Lower costs

The main reason to source products from Asia is of course, because of the low production and labour costs in the majority of Asian countries. That, and as the region accounts for a third of the world’s total population, it means that there is a large labour force ready and willing to work! Check out our low cost country sourcing article for more info!

Wages in Asian countries are comparatively low than the western world which means that you can quite easily find the skillset that you need for your manufacturing requirements, without having to pay a premium.

Not only that, but there is greater access to raw materials in Asia, which in turn lowers the production costs involved with a wide variety of products. Typically speaking, you can expect to save at least 20% more than you would if you were to source locally or from any other part of the world. For large and growing enterprises, this is a considerable amount of money that can be fed back into the business.

If you want to go further and save even more money, many people choose to work with a product sourcing and supply chain management company. This is always recommended when you are tapping into a foreign and unfamiliar market. With connections in place, boots on the ground, and a thorough knowledge and understanding of local business etiquette, your product sourcing partners can connect you with the most reputable suppliers and negotiate even more attractive deals.

3.      A larger supply base

There are many equitable Asian suppliers that have worked hard to establish an exceptional reputation. This is what many rely on for their business to survive and thrive in such a competitive marketplace. In fact, it is this high level of competition that works massively in your favour as it makes it easier to negotiate better terms and enjoy a more personalised service.

There is a downside to this however: as there is such a large supply base in Asia, it does mean that you have a greater chance of being taken advantage of. As such, you really do need to be exceptionally careful when it comes to selecting the right suppler to work with.

Again, the best way to avoid this is by working with a product sourcing agency with an established presence in the region. When leveraging the expertise of those who understand the Asian market better, you won’t need to worry about being duped; a quality product sourcing agency will know what signs to look out for and steer you in the right direction.

4.      Excellent quality of product

One common concern that people have when sourcing from overseas is whether they will be having to compromise on quality. Certainly, you may be able to save a significant amount of money on your products, but what happens to the quality in return?

Contrary to what you might think, Asian products are typically made to an exceptional – internationally recognised – standard. This is largely due to the immense competition in this industry. As such, regular training and the adoption of new, innovative technologies is common in Asian manufacturers.

5.      Impressive efficiency

Production and manufacturing companies in Asia are world-renowned for their efficiency. They must maintain excellent manufacturing speed in order to ensure that they remain at the top of the list and that European countries continue to source from them.

Whether you are working to a tight schedule and have high demand for a product that needs to be produced quickly, without compromising on quality, Asia production standards are typically carried out with great speed, quality, and efficiency.

If you tie it all together with a product sourcing and supply chain management company, you will have airtight logistics in place. So, not only will your products be manufactured quickly and to a standard that meets your expectations, but they can be moved from A to Be with the utmost speed and efficiency as well.

The takeaway

Working closely with a product sourcing agency will take all of the benefits of sourcing in Asia and multiply them. You’ll be able to enjoy the consistency of quality products coupled with the timely arrival of your goods.

If you want to save a significant amount of time and money for your business, then we highly recommend that you explore this avenue further.

What are the advantages of hiring a supply chain management company?

Today, global supply chains are becoming increasingly complicated. This is making a data-driven approach to managing the supply chain an essentiality for businesses who wish to remain competitive.

Supply chain management that is data-driven provides you with greater visibility from end to end, allowing better monitoring of information, goods and services from both procurement and manufacturing & delivery.

That said, data isn’t the only thing driving effective supply chain management at the moment. There are other critical factors at play, such as having a solid vendor / supplier relationship, airtight cost control, and working with an established logistics partner than can provide you with innovative supply chain technology as well.

In this article, we’re going to look at the benefits of using supply chain management services and how it can significantly improve your business.

Seamless collaboration

The flow of information between partners in the supply chain is among some of the biggest challenges for businesses today. It is estimated that some 76% of businesses do not have an automated flow of information across their supply chain in place, and half of them say that information often arrives fragmented thus resulting in lost opportunity as a result.

Working with a supply chain management company can help to prevent this. You might imagine that adding a third-party into the mix will only confuse things, but when executed properly it is quite the contrary. Reputable supply chain management companies that integrate software solutions can remove any bottlenecks and ensure that there is seamless sharing of information throughout. This in turn will provide all parties involved with a ‘big-picture’ view of the supply chain, end to end.

With such an improved access to data, decision makers will have all of the information that they need, in the relevant context, to take the appropriate action!

Enhanced quality control

Another advantage to working with a supply chain management company is quality control. Product sourcing and supply chain management agencies can ensure that you have greater control over both your direct suppliers, and their suppliers as well. They can conduct regular audits and request documentation thus verifying suppliers’ compliance, and so much more, such as:

  • Ensuring on-time delivery
  • Reducing scrap rates and reworks
  • Improving final product quality
  • Reducing time for complaint resolutions
  • Etc.

Your supply chain management company can analyse performance data and partner with the best-performing vendors and suppliers in order to maintain the very strictest quality control.

Even greater efficiency

Product sourcing and supply chain management companies rely on real-time data as to the availability of various raw materials and any potential manufacturing delays. This allows you to implement reactive backup plans, for example: sourcing certain materials from an alternative supplier.

With such smart automation solutions available, it results in far higher efficiency all around. It is the job of the supply chain manager to make sure that every single aspect of your logistics solutions is airtight.

And indeed with fewer delays you’ll be providing a greater, more positive customer experience which is great for bolstering your reputation.

Keep up with increased demand

The best supply chain managers will have access to real-time data which can enable them to react to changes in demand, on the fly. So, if for example customer sales were to increase by 5-10% in a week, your SCM company would be able to order more products in response.

Better shipping optimisation

Think of hiring a supply chain management company like hiring an accountant. You are hiring a specialist in a particular field that is otherwise complicated and time-consuming. So, rather than waste your time trying to navigate the complexities of logistics – particularly when sourcing products from Asia – you can focus on your other duties and leave the details to the professionals.

Today, more and more customers are expecting their goods faster and for less. As such, having the finest shipping optimisation, even more so when it comes to the last mile delivery, is an essentiality.

Reduced overheads and increased savings

A supply chain management company can provide you with more accurate demand predictions. This can help to reduce the overheads involved with storing slow-moving inventory, for example—and in the same breath, you can start stocking higher-velocity inventory and start making more money as a result.

Further to that, a supply chain management company can take care of your warehousing requirements as part of their service. With better optimised warehouse layouts and advanced inventory management systems, your business can save an attractive amount of time, money, and labour.

Better risk mitigation

Supply chain management companies are always analysing the big picture, revealing any potential risks and mitigating them accordingly. With multiple backup plans in place, your business will be much more versatile and better able to respond to unexpected circumstances.

Effectively sourcing products from Asia and overseas

There are many advantages to sourcing products from Asia and overseas, but without the proper experience or connections in place, it can be difficult for buyers to tap into. Fortunately, with a product sourcing and supply chain management company on board, you can leverage their expertise and reap the rewards.

Not only can this grant you access to a greater variety of suppliers, but they can ensure that your logistics is well-optimised and that all of your required materials and products make it to where they need to be on time and with as little cost to your business as possible.


Ultimately, working with a third-party supply chain management is an effective way of making your life easier. Rather than build an-house team to handle these requirements, or take them on yourself, you can simply outsource them to a partner that thrives on it. That, coupled with all of the amazing benefits listed above (and more), is precisely why you should be giving it some serious thought.

Your competitors are doing it; don’t allow yourself to be left behind.

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