Apple supplier Pegatron says it could expand its U.S. operations by up to five-fold, but it wouldn’t make much of a dent in Apple’s production needs, nor lead to many new American jobs.
According to a Chinese-langauge Economic Daily News report, Pegatron chairman TH Tung said at his company’s year-end banquet that its plants in California and Indiana could be expanded to meet the needs of purchasers. It would likely have little impact on the U.S. workforce, as any increase would be accommodated by automation, and not by growing the employment rolls significantly.
Pegatron’s U.S. locations are primarily used for small runs of repair parts for electronics companies. Currently, neither U.S. facility assembles goods for Apple, instead primarily working for HP and Dell. The locations also provide on-site service for some products.
AppleInsider notes that even if Pegatron increased their U.S. production volume by five times, it would be a “far cry less” than what Apple would need in even a slow Mac sales quarter, not including the iPhone’s production needs.
During last year’s Presidential campaign, President-elect Donald Trump said he would impose tariffs against companies that built products overseas and brought them into the U.S. He promised a 35% tariff against such products. His plan would also offer economic incentives to companies that moved manufacturing jobs back stateside.
Apple requested both Pegatron and Foxconn look at the costs of such a move. Foxconn reportedly came back with a plan, while Pegatron demurred, saying the costs of such an effort would make it too expensive.