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19 June


Taiwan Presidential Candidate: I will move my factories if Beijing tries to close them

Foxconn Technology Group is the main supplier and assembler of Apple phones

Photo: Nikkei

/NOVOSTIVL/ Chairman of major Apple supplier, Foxconn Technology Group, Terry Gou on Monday said he would shut down factories in China and move them elsewhere if Beijing threatens his company’s manufacturing facilities there if he is elected Taiwanese president. This article appeared in the Nikkei Asian Review.

"If Beijing later threatens to close down my factories after I become Taiwanese president, and says I can't talk to them as a peer in a respectful way … I will tell them to just give me a couple of months and I will move my production sites to more competitive places in the world," said Gou at a press conference in Taipei. Gou announced plans mid-April to run as a candidate for Kuomintang, the opposition party, in presidential elections next year.

It was the first time that Gou publicly rejected criticism that his deep manufacturing ties in China might compromise Taiwan's independence as Beijing could threaten to close down Foxconn’s plants there. Gou’s Foxconn, formally traded as Hon Hai Precision Industry, is the world’s biggest electronics manufacturer and key iPhone assembler. Crucially for China, it is also one of its top exporters.

He said on Monday that Beijing would not "target a single company and force it to close down factories." He pointed to the fact that the Chinese economy faces a lot of challenges and will need foreign investment, including from Taiwan, to support growth.