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Every second 36 mobile phones are produced. That´s almost 22 million per week. The market for electronic gadgets has been booming over the last few years. And we all are part of this huge market.

Behind each mobile phone lies a complex web of suppliers. Each supplier makes different parts of the electronic gadgets we buy in our shops. Often the big brand companies like Apple, Nokia, Philips and Sony Ericsson don.t actually manufacture products themselves but engage other companies (contract manufacturers) that produce components or even the complete product for them.

A supplier could be a mining company in the Democratic Republic of Congo that provides metals needed in the product. Or it could be the factory in China that makes parts of the phone like the battery or the display panel. The complexity of a supply chain can be seen in the picture of the production of a laptop in China. Take a look at the picture below. This is a production chain of a laptop, but the one for your mobile phone will look very similar.

production chain


Now you can answer questions 1 and 2 on your worksheet.

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