Foxconn Technology Group, the world's largest electronics contractor, announced on Thursday it will invest billion in the next four years to build a liquid-crystal display panel manufacturing facility in Wisconsin in the United States.
The investment will be the largest new greenfield investment made by a foreign company in U.S. history, creating 3,000 new jobs, with the potential to grow to 13,000 jobs in the state, Foxconn said in a statement.
This also signifies the start of a series of investments made by Foxconn in U.S. manufacturing. U.S. President Donald Trump and Terry Gou, founder and CEO of Foxconn, made the announcement during a ceremony at the White House.
The new facility, in southeastern Wisconsin, will manufacture LCD panels used in a wide range of sectors－the latest generation of televisions, self-driving cars, aircraft systems, education and entertainment, as well as healthcare, advanced manufacturing systems, office automation and interactive new retail.
"We are thrilled to build a state-of-the-art display plant in the U.S. heartland. As the first in a series of facilities we will build in several states of the U.S., the plant is part of our bigger plan to create a robust 8K plus 5G ecosystem in U.S.," Gou said.
He added that Wisconsin also offers a talented, hardworking labor force and has a long history in advanced manufacturing, presenting an extraordinary opportunity for the company.
At present, the production lines of LCD panels are mainly concentrated in Asian countries, such as China, South Korea and Japan. Analysts said Foxconn's Wisconsin facility marks its biggest expansion into the U.S. and will help the manufacturing giant expand its sales of large-sized LCD TVs in the U.S. market.
"Foxconn hopes to reduce costs and grow its market share in the U.S. by launching the LCD panel plant. Moreover, U.S. President Trump's claim to revitalize manufacturing, as well as preferential policies and subsidies from the state of Wisconsin have attracted Foxconn to produce LCD panels to satisfy local demand," said Zhang Yanbin, assistant director of Beijing-based consultancy All View Cloud.
Zhang said production of LCD panels in China has already reached saturation point and competition from local display panel manufacturers, such as BOE Technology Group and Shenzhen China Star Optoelectronics Technology is very fierce, which has pushed Foxconn to seek new business growth point in overseas market.
"North America is the biggest LCD TV market around the world and the demand for high-definition televisions is growing very fast in this area," said Liang Zhenpeng, a consumer electronics analyst, adding establishing a plant in U.S. will avoid the tariffs and trade barriers that the U.S. has imposed on Chinese enterprises.