Foxconn and Sharp are looking closer than ever to building a manufacturing plant within the United States, according to one Sharp executive who said that the plan is still "on the table" (via Nikkei). The plant would mainly be focused on the manufacturing of LCD panels for TV sets and home appliances, but Foxconn is said to be considering moving iPhone production stateside as well.
The news continues a rumor from last year born out of President-elect Donald Trump's comments on wanting Apple to make its products stateside. Foxconn laid out plans for such a move in December, along with Japan-based SoftBank Group, with each company hoping to create a combined 100,000 jobs in the U.S. over the next four years.
Nothing is yet official, however, and the same Sharp executive noted that "we will make a decision carefully."
Hon Hai Precision Industry and its Japanese subsidiary Sharp have begun studying the possibility of building a liquid crystal display panel plant in the U.S., a Sharp executive said Friday.
With Trump urging American manufacturers to bring operations back to the U.S., Hon Hai is considering production in the U.S. due to its huge market for TVs and other home appliances.
Although details about the cost of the plant and its location remain unspecified, people familiar with the plan said Foxconn would spend about the same amount on constructing the U.S. location as it did on a similar facility in Guangzhou -- around 1 trillion yen, or $8.69 billion.
As an incentive, Donald Trump in November told Apple CEO Tim Cook that he would offer the company a "very large tax cut" to make its products in the U.S. Cook was said to have remained largely neutral on the subject during his call with Trump, later pointing out that one of the major reasons Apple's manufacturing is so heavily centered in China is due to the country's large number of individuals with the required "vocational kind of skills."
Foxconn and Apple both have manufacturing facilities on a very small scale in the U.S., but the newly discussed facility by Foxconn and Sharp would be notably larger. Currently, Foxconn has plants in Virginia and Indiana, along with logistic locations in California and Texas. Apple has a comparably limited facility in Austin, Texas which manufactures the company's Mac Pro.
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