Apple is deciding to manufacture the new Mac Pro computer in China rather than the US.
Apple Inc. AAPL -0.91% is manufacturing its new Mac Pro computer in China, according to people familiar with its plans, shifting abroad production of what had been its only major device assembled in the U.S. as trade tensions escalate between the Trump administration and Beijing.
The tech giant has tapped Taiwanese contractor Quanta Computer Inc. to manufacture the $6,000 desktop computer and is ramping up production at a factory near Shanghai, the people said. Apple can save on shipping costs for components given the proximity of many of its suppliers to Shanghai, rather than having to supply a factory in the U.S.
While the Mac Pro isn’t one of Apple’s higher-volume products, the decision on where to make it carries outsize significance. Apple’s reliance on factories in China to manufacture its products has been an issue for the company, especially under President Trump, who has pressured Apple and other companies to make more in the U.S.
With the previous Mac Pro model, released in 2013, Apple Chief Executive Tim Cook trumpeted plans to build it in the U.S. Apple invested $100 million in tooling and other equipment for a plant in Austin, Texas, run by contract manufacturer Flex Ltd. Each computer was stamped “Assembled in the USA.”
Flex and Quanta declined to comment. An Apple spokesman said the new Mac Pro is designed and engineered in the U.S. and includes U.S.-made components. Apple said it supports manufacturing in 30 U.S. states and spent $60 billion last year with more than 9,000 U.S. suppliers.
“Final assembly is only one part of the manufacturing process,” the spokesman said, adding that the company’s investments support two million American jobs. The Mac Pro is Apple’s most powerful computer, used primarily by a relatively small number of professionals working in industries such as film and videogames.
Apple has done more in America since Trump has taken office
Apple in the past two years has announced a second campus in Austin to handle customer support and operations, and reported more than $500 million in new contracts with U.S. component suppliers that manufacture at home. But Apple hasn’t disclosed any plans to build new manufacturing facilities in the U.S.
Making the new Mac Pro in China isn’t likely to affect many workers in Texas because demand for the old model fizzled years ago. The Flex workforce had shifted to refurbishing already-made computers, former Flex employees said. The Flex plant continues to make products for HP Inc. and other companies, they said.
Trump’s trade war is hurting Apple’s willingness to manufacture in China.
Last year, the Trump administration spared product categories including Apple’s smartwatch and AirPods wireless earbuds from an initial round of duties. But the administration’s proposal to impose additional tariffs of 25% covering $300 billion in imports from China would affect all of Apple’s major devices, including the Mac, iPhone and iPad.
While it shifts Mac Pro production to China, Apple more broadly is considering moving some of its assembly work out of China because of concerns about U.S. tariffs, The Wall Street Journal reported last week. One of the people familiar with Apple’s plans said that same consideration could extend to the Mac Pro, with Ireland as an alternate possible site.
The narrative surrounding this story is going to be used to attack President Trump. The left and Mainstream Media will act as if this shows tariffs aren’t working. The opposite is true. This shows that American trade policy needs to be fixed. American companies should never feel that they need to go out of the country to manufacture parts of there products.
We should also keep in mind Apple’s relationship with China. Apple and the Chinese government have a great working relationship and it didn’t shock me that while the US is in the middle of the trade war with China Apple decided to move part of there production to China.
The Palmieri Report is a Pro-America News Outlet founded by Jacob Palmieri two years ago at the age of 19. Since its founding, it has gotten over 200k pages views and over 20k followers. The Palmieri Report is dedicated to debunking the lies spread by the left-wing Mainstream Media.