China plans virtual world for commerce

Your favorite pants are fraying? You may soon be able to order replacements directly from the factory where they were made, according to the chief scientist of an ambitious Chinese Internet project.

China’s government is building a vast virtual world dubbed Beijing Cyber Recreation District, which founders say will help the manufacturing superpower evolve into an e-commerce juggernaut.

Some supply-chain experts say the project is impossibly grandiose in its goal to provide direct links between tens of thousands of Chinese manufacturers and millions of individual customers around the world.

But every “Made in China” label eventually could include a Web site where customers could order more — and Chinese factories would produce custom-made goods and send them directly to consumers’ homes, mused Chi Tau Robert Lai, chief scientist of the virtual world.

Full article:  Associated Press

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