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If you can’t beat them, join them

Q: So there’s investment in China
A: Yes.
Q: On what sort of scale?
A: Well I don’t know it’s all a bit hush-hush, but there are arrangements as I say, particularly the Coates-Patons, I don’t know whether it’s on a government basis with the Peking Government or not, but they’re there, and they’re setting up plants and the know-how and all the rest of it and that will be obtained anyway … you can’t stop it … from whoever is prepared to give it. So you can bet your bottom dollar that it won’t be many years before they’re just as efficient as anybody else.
Q: Isn’t it a case of ‘cutting your own throat’ though, in many ways?
A: Who?
Q: The British exporting knowledge, machine makers exporting machinery to China.
A: Well if you can’t beat them you’ve got to join them otherwise they’ll beat you, what else is there left to do?

Source The owner of a woollen mill discusses increasing competition from China, 1984.
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