Skip to main content

Foxconn has re-opened its Zhengzhou iPhone plant, but only 10% of its workforce turned up

Tim Cook at Foxconn
Tim Cook at Foxconn (Image credit: Apple)

What you need to know

  • Apple iPhone manufacturer Foxconn has re-opened its Zhengzhou factory.
  • But only 10% of the workforce was able to make it into work.
  • This following the closure of the plant due to coronavirus.

Apple partner Foxconn has been able to re-open its Zhengzhou factory after receiving the go-ahead from Chinese authorities. That's the good news. The bad news is that just 10% of the factory's workforce turned up.

According to a new Reuters report, the Zhengzhou factory is now once again available for work, but the factory in Shenzhen remains closed.

Taiwan's Foxconn, the world's largest contract electronics maker, got the green light to restart production in the eastern central Chinese city of Zhengzhou, said the person with direct knowledge of the matter. The company, however, has not yet been allowed to restart production in Shenzhen, a southern manufacturing hub, the source said.

Those two factories are the main players in Apple's iPhone production machine with their closure – and the knock-on impacts that will cause throughout the supply chain – likely to result in lower global iPhone shipments than had previously been forecast.

While the Zhengzhou plant struggles to get people into work, company officials are said to be working to get other plants online as soon as possible.

About 16,000 people, or under 10% of Foxconn's workforce in Zhengzhou have returned to the plant, the source said, adding that company executives were trying very hard to negotiate with authorities to resume production in other parts of China, including Kunshan, in southeastern Jiangsu province.About 16,000 people, or under 10% of Foxconn's workforce in Zhengzhou have returned to the plant, the source said, adding that company executives were trying very hard to negotiate with authorities to resume production in other parts of China, including Kunshan, in southeastern Jiangsu province.

Even with factories open, workers may still simply be unable to reach them because of ongoing transport restrictions that have been put into place in an attempt to prevent the spread of coronavirus. That could well be the issue Foxconn is currently facing in Zhengzhou and it may be one that is difficult to overcome.

Oliver Haslam
Contributor

Oliver Haslam has written about Apple and the wider technology business for more than a decade with bylines on How-To Geek, PC Mag, iDownloadBlog, and many more. He has also been published in print for Macworld, including cover stories. At iMore, Oliver is involved in daily news coverage and, not being short of opinions, has been known to 'explain' those thoughts in more detail, too.

Having grown up using PCs and spending far too much money on graphics card and flashy RAM, Oliver switched to the Mac with a G5 iMac and hasn't looked back. Since then he's seen the growth of the smartphone world, backed by iPhone, and new product categories come and go. Current expertise includes iOS, macOS, streaming services, and pretty much anything that has a battery or plugs into a wall. Oliver also covers mobile gaming for iMore, with Apple Arcade a particular focus. He's been gaming since the Atari 2600 days and still struggles to comprehend the fact he can play console quality titles on his pocket computer.