Apple CEO Tim Cook praises China’s Development and Expansion
China’s Premier Li Qiang recently met with Apple CEO Tim Cook and other top foreign executives in Beijing to discuss China’s plans to open up its economy further. According to the country’s foreign ministry, Li assured Cook and the other executives that China will continue to open up more in the future. The meeting took place during the government-organized China Development Forum, which is often referred to as China’s Davos.
The forum comes as China seeks to revive its economy following the scrapping of a strict “zero COVID” policy that isolated the country for nearly three years. Attendees at the event included high-profile executives like former US Secretary of State Henry Kissinger, Procter & Gamble CEO Jon Moeller, PwC Global Chairperson Bob Moritz, and HSBC CEO Noel Quinn.
China’s Economic Growth Challenges:
China is currently facing several long-term economic challenges, including a low birth rate, tensions with the United States, and regulatory crackdowns on sectors like technology, education, and real estate. Despite these challenges, the Chinese government has set an economic growth target of around 5% for 2023, its lowest target in decades.
Li has pledged that entrepreneurs and businesses in China will have a “better environment and broader space for development” during the National People’s Congress. This is meant to assure local and foreign businesses that the government supports private industry amid a shift towards national security and state-led development under President Xi Jinping.
Apple diversifies supply chain:
Cook’s visit to China comes as Apple is seeking to increase its manufacturing operations in India and Vietnam to reduce its reliance on supply chains in China. This move is due to rising geopolitical tensions with the West and regulatory crackdowns in China. Foxconn’s iPhone factory in Zhengzhou, a major Apple supplier, was heavily disrupted by repeated lockdowns last year under China’s “zero COVID” policy.
Cook expressed his belief in China’s rapid development and praised the country during his visit. The CEO’s trip to China is an important one for Apple, as the company relies heavily on China for both manufacturing and sales. The assurance from Premier Li that China will continue to open up further is likely to be welcome news for Apple and other foreign businesses looking to operate in the country.
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