Taiwan based electronics contract manufacturing company Foxconn announced that it plans to begin construction of the manufacturing portions of its Wisconsin facility this summer. It was also announced that the company will begin production of flat screen displays there by the end of 2020. In 2017, Wisconsin had offered $4 billion in state and local tax incentives to Foxconn to build a plant in the state.
The incentive package had become a major issue in 2018 in the governor’s race between Scott Walker , a republican who had signed off on part of that incentive package and Tony Evers, the Democratic candidate who had criticized it. Evers had defeated Walkers but he has not pulled out of the package since he took over the office. Foxconn is a company that manufactures products like iPhones at huge plants primarily in China.
The company had originally promised to build flat screen televisions at the Wisconsin plant but then changed its plans to make more modest LED flat screen TVs. Since June 2018, construction is underway on other buildings at the site. Earlier this year there were reports as one of the high ranking Foxconn executives had hinted that they might drop manufacturing altogether at the Wisconsin site and that would use the site solely for research and development.
But it was US president Donald Trump who supported bringing the plant to Wisconsin and convinced Foxconn to get back to manufacturing at the site. So far the company has not given any update on how many manufacturing jobs would be needed and that how many of its Wisconsin jobs would be in research and development. Foxconn will get a full incentive package only of its manages to hit a target to hire 13,000 workers. The company is the fourth largest information technology company by revenue and is also the largest private employer in Taiwan.
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