Apple ends ‘Made in Taiwan’ labels to avoid angering China: Report

Written by Javed Iqbal

  • Apple warned suppliers not to identify Taiwan as an independent country on Friday, Nikkei reported.
  • The announcement came after some Apple components were held for review by Chinese authorities.
  • Earlier this week, US House Speaker Nancy Pelosi drew China’s ire for visiting Taiwan.

Apple on Friday told suppliers to avoid labeling products from Taiwan as “made in Taiwan,” according to one report from Nikkei.

The technology company told its suppliers that products or parts made in Taiwan must be identified as made in either “Taiwan, China” or “Chinese Taipei” to avoid indicating that the island is independent from China, the Japanese business news agency said.

According to Nikkei, Apple made the decision to avoid possible supply chain disruptions from Chinese control of the labels, especially as the company prepares to receive components from Taiwan that will be used for new products to be launched later this year.

Some iPhone components were held for review on Thursday to see if the shipments were labeled to China’s satisfaction, the Nikkei reported.

Apple did not immediately respond to Insider’s request for comment before publication.

Apple’s warning comes just days after US House of Representatives Nancy Pelosi traveled to Taiwan in a visit that sparked a strong reaction from China. The nation has claimed Taiwan as its own for decades, although China has never controlled the self-governing democratic country.

Pelosi’s actions were seen by Beijing as a “major political provocation” and a challenge to China’s sovereignty, Hua Chunying, China’s assistant foreign minister, said on Twitter. Chinese President Xi Jinping warned ahead of the visit, the Biden administration would be “burned.” Beijing too launched a series of military exercises around Taiwan in response.

Pelosi has been outspoken in her support for Taiwan independence.

“We want Taiwan to always have freedom with security, and we’re not backing down from that,” Pelosi said at a press event on Wednesday.

Apple is particularly dependent on China and Taiwan to supply components for its products. Last year over a quarter of the company’s suppliers were located in China. Much of the company’s products are assembled in China, a process that Apple CEO Tim Cook has helped pioneer.

Last year, the Information reported that Cook struck a five-year, $275 billion deal with the Chinese government in 2016 to ease a regulatory crackdown on its business in Asia.

Do you work at Apple or have an Apple-related tip? Contact the reporter from a non-work email at gkay@insider.com

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Javed Iqbal

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