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Apple supply chain data shows receding exposure to China as risks mount

With the world's biggest iPhone factory, operated in central China by Foxconn, battling production shortfalls and labour unrest spurred largely by Beijing's harsh virus containment policies, analysts expect the risks - and Apple's retreat - to accelerate.

November 30, 2022 / 06:20 AM IST
The Apple Inc. flagship store in Singapore, on Friday, Sept. 16, 2022.  Photographer: Edwin Koo/Bloomberg

The Apple Inc. flagship store in Singapore, on Friday, Sept. 16, 2022. Photographer: Edwin Koo/Bloomberg

Apple Inc's wide exposure to Chinese manufacturing, notable both for its low costs and rising risks, has receded since the COVID-19 pandemic began, company supply chain data shows.

With the world's biggest iPhone factory, operated in central China by Foxconn, battling production shortfalls and labour unrest spurred largely by Beijing's harsh virus containment policies, analysts expect the risks - and Apple's retreat - to accelerate.

A Reuters analysis of Apple's supply chain data shows China's prominence in the company's global manufacturing is declining: In the five years to 2019, China was the primary location of 44% to 47% of its suppliers' production sites, but that fell to 41% in 2020, and 36% in 2021.

Apple did not reply to a request for comment.