Foxconn recommits to $10B Wisconsin plant after call from Trump

Roman Schwartz
February 4, 2019

February 1, 2019: Foxconn changes its plans again after Chairman Terry Gou speaks directly with Trump, announcing the company will make Generation 6 screens at the Mount Pleasant site after all. We look forward to working with Foxconn as it advances its Generation 6 manufacturing facility, including its ongoing construction of manufacturing, assembly and research facilities in 2019.

Foxconn had said earlier this week that it remained committed to its investment in Wisconsin, which had been celebrated for its potential to create up to 13,000 jobs.

Amid protests, Foxconn deal finalized in closed session meetingThe Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation approved a contract Wednesday subsidizing $3 billion to Taiwanese technology company Foxconn.

The company's announcement is an about-face from its stance earlier in the week, when the electronics manufacturer said it was reassessing its plans.

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Foxconn Technology Group has shifted its stated strategy yet again on Friday for a massive Wisconsin campus, crediting a conversation with President Donald Trump for cementing plans to proceed with building a factory to make high-tech liquid display screens. State leaders offered almost $4 billion in tax incentives to help seal the deal.

Trump tweeted on Friday: "Great news on Foxconn in Wisconsin after my conversation with Terry Gou!"

"Our decision to build and invest here was made independent of any Foxconn pledge but informed by long-term projections of market dynamics and an opportunity to better serve the healthcare needs of this growing region", Mr. Klein told the publication. Not since President Ronald Reagan in 1984 had a Republican carried Wisconsin in a presidential election, and a big part of Trump's Rust Belt strategy - which also brought unexpected wins in Pennsylvania and MI - was a heavy emphasis on bringing blue-collar manufacturing jobs back to the United States. The development follows reports that the company was considering jettisoning the large-scale project that had promised to bring 13,000 jobs to the Badger State. "You can't use a factory to view our Wisconsin investment". Residents' opposition, labor shortage, and technology transfer difficulties are the three main reasons why manufacturing companies like Foxconn could not move back to the United States easily, industry insiders and analysts have said. As subsidies ballooned above $4 billion, Foxconn said it would build a less-expensive plant making smaller panels and fill many engineering jobs with Chinese nationals.

Taiwan-based Foxconn Technology Group makes products for the education, medical and healthcare, entertainment and sports, security, and smart cities. Village officials have acquired roughly 82 percent of the 2,873 acres Foxconn wants to build on for its three-phase project. "This is distressing news for Wisconsin taxpayers", said State Representative Mark Spreitzer.

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