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No decision from Hon Hai on 2nd Wisconsin location until 2018: report

2017/10/12 12:25:04

Taipei, Oct. 12 (CNA) Taiwan-based manufacturing giant Hon Hai Precision Industry Co. (鴻海) is not expected to decide on a second location for its investment in the U.S. state of Wisconsin until 2018, according to the Wisconsin State Journal newspaper.

Charlie Alvarez, senior adviser to the president of Foxconn Medical Group under Hon Hai, said in an interview with the newspaper that the Taiwanese investor is considering investing in a medical facility in Wisconsin in addition to a US$10 billion plan to build a flat panel factory in the state.

Hon Hai, the world's largest contract electronics maker, is known as Foxconn in the global market.

"Right now, we're waiting on the other facility to get up and going, and then we'll get directives on the health care group," Alvarez said, adding that a decision on the new project is unlikely until 2018.

Earlier this month, Hon Hai picked Mount Pleasant in Wisconsin's Racine County as the site of its advanced flat panel plant.

On July 26, Hon Hai Chairman Terry Gou (郭台銘), accompanied by top U.S. government officials, including President Donald Trump, announced that the company plans to invest US$10 billion in an advanced flat panel plant in Wisconsin to produce 8K ultra high-definition and advanced 5G operations as a foundation for future industrial development.

In mid-September, lawmakers in Wisconsin issued a green light for US$3 billion in subsidies to facilitate Hon Hai's investment. The incentives will be the largest state subsidies ever given to a foreign company operating in the United States.

Alvarez said in the interview that no decisions on the second investment location on medical care services in Wisconsin will be made until all of the necessary documents are signed for the flat panel production base, which is expected to create about 3,000 jobs in its initial stage and boost the number of new jobs to 13,000, with an estimated average annual salary of US$53,875, over a period of up to six years.

According to Alvarez, Hon Hai's medical group is developing smart ward products aimed at eliminating airborne viruses around patients, robotic work stations for nurses and other related products, adding that the Taiwanese firm could test these products in Wisconsin.

Hon Hai's Wisconsin investment is part of its ambitious "Flying Eagle" project in response to Trump's "America First" policy.

Trump said the Wisconsin plan is just the beginning of Hon Hai's investment in the U.S. and that the firm's investment could expand to US$30 billion. International media said that Michigan and Ohio are also gearing up for Hon Hai to pour funds into the two states.

(By Mao Ying-chao and Frances Huang)