Taipei--Sharp Corp., a Japanese subsidiary of Taiwan-based manufacturing giant Hon Hai Precision Industry Co. (??), confirmed Saturday that it is planning to set up a flat panel plant in the United States.
Sharp President Tai Cheng-wu (???) said at an exhibition in Taipei that the plant will roll out small and medium-sized screens for a wide range of applications.
Tai, who was Hon Hai's deputy chairman before it acquired a 66 percent stake in Sharp in 2016, said the flat screen production facility will cater not only to smartphone brands but also to value added products in the aerospace and national defense industries.
It has been reported in the international media that Sharp and Hon Hai, also known as Foxconn in the global market, will join forces to invest in the U.S. market at a time when U.S. President Donald Trump has been advocating an "America First" approach. Trump has been urging U.S. and foreign enterprises to invest in the country, create jobs for American workers and to "Buy American and Hire American."
Tai was part of a delegation, led by Hon Hai Chairman Terry Gou (???), which visited the White House twice in late April and held discussions with U.S. authorities on the possibility of investments. White House spokeswoman Natalie Strom confirmed that Gou met briefly with Trump.
Tai said that Sharp and Hon Hai are likely to jointly invest some 800 billion Japanese yen (US$7.20 billion) in the U.S. market.
While Tai did not disclose how much Sharp planned to spend on the flat panel plant, he said that his company and Hon Hai were financially independent and that Sharp would use its own funds to finance the U.S. investment plan.
Hon Hai, meanwhile, has said that it will disclose the details of its U.S. investment projects when its talks with the U.S. are completed and the plans are finalized.
Sharp is evaluating when and where the flat panel plant will be built, Tai said, adding that he hopes the investment plan will be finalized as soon as possible.
He said that while the U.S. federal government and six states have been aggressively seeking to attract foreign investment, the Taiwan central government has been cold toward the business sector, and the local governments have not been enthusiastic about private investment.
According to the Japanese media, Sharp has benefited from its new management under Hon Hai and is expected to report 40 billion yen in net profit for the fiscal year that ended in March, reversing a net loss of 24.8 billion yen the previous year.
Source: Focus Taiwan News Channel