In signs of mass exodus of tech firms from the People’s Republic of China (PRC), Korean electronics giant Samsung Electronics Co announced the halting of operations of its last computer factory in China, the latest manufacturer to shift production from the world’s second-biggest economy.
Companies are rethinking their production and supply chains amid rising Chinese labour costs, a US-China trade war and the blow from the new coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic.
Samsung’s move will render around half of the 1,700 employees on contract at Samsung Electronics Suzhou Computer, excluding those involved in research and development, the South China Morning Post reported on Friday, citing a notice to Samsung staff.
The factory shipped $4.3 billion worth of goods out of China in 2012, a figure that had sunk to $1 billion by 2018, the Hong Kong-based newspaper said.
“China remains an important market for Samsung and we will continue to provide superior products and services for Chinese consumers,” the company said in a statement.
Samsung shut its last smartphone factory in China last year. Its remaining facilities include two semiconductor manufacturing sites in Suzhou and Xi’an.