Foxconn Said to Begin Construction of US Plant in Second Half of 2017

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Foxconn Said to Begin Construction of US Plant in Second Half of 2017

Taiwan's Foxconn, the world's largest contract electronics manufacturer and major Apple supplier, will begin construction on a US plant in the second half of this year, a person familiar with the matter told Reuters on Wednesday.

No other details were provided.

When contacted about the matter, Foxconn, formally known as Hon Hai Precision Industry, declined to comment.

Foxconn chairman Terry Gou has said the company was considering investing in the United States in late April, he had meetings at the White House about "capital-intensive" investment plans.

China is the best place for expanding manufacturing and investment, the country's premier told the world's largest contract electronics maker Foxconn less than two weeks after its chief executive Terry Gou went to the White House to discuss increasing investment in the United States.

"We will continue to expand our development, and optimise the business environment. China has a huge market and lots of talent, it is the best investment place for expanding manufacturing," Li Keqiang was reported as saying on the State Council's official website, which carried pictures of Li's visit on Tuesday to Foxconn's sprawling manufacturing facility in Zhengzhou, Henan province.

The pictures showed Li being escorted by Gou around the facilities. The State Council statement said Li had encouraged Gou to further invest in high-end research and development as well as in supply chain production in China.

Despite the recent rapprochement between US President Donald Trump and China President Xi Jinping over North Korea issues, China remains a competitor to the United States under Trump's "America first" agenda.

Li's visit comes weeks after Gou and other senior Foxconn executives discussed significant investments in the United States at the White House.

At the time, Gou told Reuters that Foxconn was planning "capital-intensive" investments in America. On Wednesday, a person familiar with the matter told Reuters Foxconn plans to begin construction on a U.S. plant in the second half of this year. No other details were provided.

When contacted about the matter, Foxconn, formally known as Hon Hai Precision Industry, declined to comment.

Analysts have said that Gou treads a fine line in balancing his business empire that straddles both the United States and China.

© Thomson Reuters 2017

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