Trump calls on Apple to move production from China to US

The Trump administration is poised to impose 25 percent penalties this week on $200bn worth of Chinese goods

Trump tweeted that: "Apple prices may increase because of the massive Tariffs we may be imposing on China - but there is an easy solution where there would be ZERO tax, and indeed a tax incentive".

Apple Inc. said proposed U.S. tariffs on $200 billion worth of products imported from China will raise prices for some of its popular consumer goods such as the Apple Watch and AirPods headphones. "Start building new plants now", the POTUS tweeted.

Trump said Friday that the timing of the tariffs on the $200bn worth of goods is not yet final.

The label of a Washington D.C. sweatshirt bears a U.S. flag but says "Made in China" at a souvenir stand in Washington, U.S. January 14, 2011.

As trade relations between the two countries continue to get strained, Apple said in a letter to the U.S. trade representative that the move would "hurt" the company, according to CNBC report. "As a result, tariffs will ultimately reduce the economic benefit we generate for the United States", the company writes.

According to CNBC, the company said that the President's proposed tariffs would impact various Apple products, such as the Apple Watch, AirPods, HomePod, Mac, Mini, Apple Pencil, and chargers and adapters for a number of gadgets.

It also said the MacMini computer, charging cables and equipment used in its offices and data centres could be hit by a proposed 25pc tariff on imports.

China's trade surplus with the United States reached a record $31 billion in August, despite hefty tariffs recently imposed on Chinese goods.

There was no immediate reaction to Trump's comments from the Chinese government, and the threat of more tariffs had not been reported by mainstream state-owned Chinese media as of Saturday evening. The Trump administration has also called on China to allow US companies greater access to Chinese markets and to cut its USA trade surplus.

Mr Trump imposed customs duties of up to 25 per cent on US$34 billion worth of Chinese goods in July, and on another US$16 billion in August, triggering swift tit-for-tat responses from Beijing. Apple said "it is hard to see" how tariffs would advance the government's goal.

On Apple's most recent earnings call in July, Chief Executive Officer Tim Cook said the company could face such tariffs "related to data centers". The company noted it spent $50 billion with 9,000 US suppliers in its most recent fiscal year, including Texas-based chip firm Finisar Corp and Kentucky-based Corning Inc.

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