White House confirms Trump will visit Apple's manufacturing plant in Austin

White House confirms Trump will visit Apple's manufacturing plant in Austin
By: WNG CNBC Posted On: November 17, 2019 View: 32

White House confirms Trump will visit Apple's manufacturing plant in Austin

The White House confirmed on Sunday that President Trump will tour Apple's manufacturing plant in Austin, Texas, on Wednesday.

Reports first surfaced in the past week that a Trump visit to Apple's Austin factory, where the new Mac Pro will be assembled, was in the works.

Apple shifted its Mac Pro assembly to a facility in Austin, Texas, in September after a round of tariff exemptions for computer parts the company won from trade regulators.

Apple CEO Tim Cook has been lauded for his relationship with Trump at a time when domestic manufacturing and the trade war with China could seriously harm Apple's existing business model. The Apple CEO has met one-on-one with Trump, including private dinners, as Apple faced the threat of tariffs on its products this year.

Apple has trumpeted its overall investment in the U.S. since Trump took office in 2017, including a planned $350 billion "contribution" to the U.S. economy and a "job footprint" that has grown to 2.4 million in the U.S.

Apple directly employs about 130,000 people.

Apple also has avoided the intense antitrust scrutiny faced by some of its rivals like Amazon and Google.

The Mac Pro is not a major driver of Apple revenue or profit. Apple's most profitable and popular products are made in China. But the tariff exemptions for most of the Mac Pro's parts are seen as a win for both the company and Trump, who can boast about domestic manufacturing jobs.

Apple's shares are up nearly 70% this year, almost tripling the return of the S&P 500 Index.

CNBC's Steve Kovach contributed to this report.

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