The best means of production for appropriate technologies is not always local, distributed production. The costs and benefits of the options must be compared. Some designs, such as the Hexayurt, are designed to benefit from the cost efficiencies of mass production, but may involve an element of local production and/or assembly. If it is an open design, however, local materials may be chosen when available, if suitable.

Some designs involve sophisticated technology, and can only be affordable (one of the elements that make it an "appropriate technology) if produced in a central location with the needed equipment. An example is Siemens' PROTOS plant oil stove[1] - most of it is produced locally in the Philippines, but the burner is imported, as it is more demanding to manufacture.

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