Foxconn extends footprint in Chinese mainland as US project shrinks
Published: Apr 25, 2021 08:54 PM
Employees work at a Foxconn factory in the township of Longhua, South China's Guangdong Province File photo: VCG

Employees work at a Foxconn factory in the township of Longhua, South China's Guangdong Province. File photo: VCG

Taiwan island-based electronics giant Foxconn have kicked off operations of a brand new massive factory in Zhoukou, Central China's Henan Province over the weekend, marking another extension for the company's already huge presence in the Chinese mainland, in stark contrast to its troubled project in the US. 

With a total investment of 1.5 billion yuan ($231 million), the project has two phases. The operation of the first phase started on Saturday - less than two months after Foxconn signed the deal with the local government in early March - according to the company.

According to the Zhoukou government, once both phases are completed, the factory will offer about 30,000 jobs and the annual output will be more than 3.1 billion yuan.

An official of the Chuanhui district, where the factory is located, said that the district established a special command center to facilitate the project, and relevant work, including topographic surveys and risk assessments, finished within two months, media outlet reported.

Even as the company is expanding business in the Chinese mainland with impressive speed, its US project in the state of Wisconsin - a project that was hailed by former US president Donald Trump as a sign of the rebirth of American manufacturing - is facing hurdles.

The electronics factory in Wisconsin, first announced in 2017 with total pledged investment of up to $10 billion that was expected to create 13,000 jobs, is not coming along as expected. Instead, the investment amount shrank to $672 million and the whole project will create fewer than 1,500 jobs, CNN reported on Thursday.

Under the new deal, the incentive package for the project now totals only $80 million, less than 3 percent of the nearly $3 billion in tax breaks and other perks the state originally promised, according to CNN.

"The Zhoukou factory has showed the Chinese government's efficiency and stable supply chains, while the cuts to the Wisconsin factory reflected several deep problems that exist in the US society, such as partisan battles and inadequate industrial chains," Xiang Ligang, director general of the Beijing-based Information Consumption Alliance, told the Global Times on Sunday.

"Such a massive project requires support in many factors, including an efficient government, vast talent pool and adequate industrial chain that guarantee supply. Apparently, the US doesn't have such conditions," Xiang added.

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