Promises to Stick by Factory Plans in Wisconsin — Foxconn Damage Control

Promises to Stick by Factory Plans in Wisconsin — Foxconn Damage Control

"We have undertaken the evaluation while simultaneously seeking to broaden our investment across Wisconsin far beyond our original plans to ensure the company, our workforce, the local community, and the state of Wisconsin will be positioned for long-term success", Foxconn said.

January 30, 2019: Louis Woo, special assistant to Foxconn's CEO, sends a shockwave through Wisconsin when he tells Reuters that the company will scale back and possibly shelve plans to build display screens in the state, saying the company can't compete.

Congressman Bryan Steil held a listening session in Mount Pleasant just hours after Foxconn's announcement went public.

The company said it was looking forward to continuing its expansion of investment in American talent in Wisconsin and the U.S.

Wisconsin lawmakers put together a $3 billion incentives package to lure the company to the state. Evers, Wisconsin's current governor who used Walker's support for Foxconn against him in the race, was a critic of the project during the campaign but has said this week he's working closely with Foxconn on the project.

According to Gou, Trump said in the phone conversation Friday that he hoped Foxconn would continue with the innovation-centered project in Wisconsin so as to cultivate high-tech talent and to reverse the outflow of such workers to the USA east and west coasts.

Mount Pleasant resident Paul Pham said he won't be sold on the deal until Foxconn's commitment to 13,000 jobs are fulfilled.

"After productive discussions between the White House and the company, and after a personal conversation between President Donald J. Trump and Chairman Terry Gou, Foxconn is moving forward with our planned construction of a Gen 6 fab facility", according to a company statement.

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The Taiwanese company initially said it planned to build a plant to produce flat-screen panels.

Local Wisconsin government and economic development officials where the Foxconn campus is located praised the news, saying construction of the "Gen 6" factory will coincide with construction of other related buildings over the next 18 months.

But as journalist Aaron Rupar noted on Twitter, the information in the CNBC article is hardly great news for Wisconsin's blue-collar workers.

In an interview with Reuters, the company said this week that even those plans might be scrapped, and the Wisconsin campus would mostly employ engineers and researchers instead.

Foxconn declined to comment on how Friday's decision was reached and when hiring is expected to begin.

Tony Evers told reporters in the state Capitol: "I'm comfortable that they're still committed to the state, they're still committed to this Generation 6 technology, but that doesn't mean we won't continue to encourage them to be more transparent and more consistent".

It's too early to tell what will unfold in Wisconsin, Dorfman said.

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