Have sky rocketed in the past year...... jesus, I used to pay about £18 for 500g of solder but now it's £26 and with 20% VAT that takes it up to £31.20! Same with most electronic parts and the only way to beat the inflation is to buy in quantity. It's absolutely crazy and no way will this country ever be able to compete with the Asians (price wise) when it comes to anything electronics related.
The Chinese are able to sell a piece of assembled gear (let's say an amplifier) for buttons but they won't sell the components, that are needed to make the amplifier, for buttons..... oh no, they make sure that we have to pay through the nose for components to ensure we remain non competitive in the market place.
The sad thing is.... we could be making our own capacitors / components in the UK but all of the capacitor companies that are british have all contracted out to the Chinese labour force. That doesn't mean "savings" for the consumer in the UK, it simply equates to greater profits for the once producers who have now become a small "team" of "get it made cheap / sell it at a premium" racketeers.
I dunno, This so called "Global community" may be fine on paper but it really is f**king things up big style!