If you’re expecting to see iPads with a “Assembled in Brazil” marker engraved across the aluminum back starting next year, think again. Brazilian officials are now claiming that “crazy demands” by Foxconn could totally nix the $12 billion deal, keeping iPhone and iPad manufacturing firmly rooted in Asia.
According to a Reuters report, Braziian officials say that Foxconn and the government just can’t come to an agreement on tax breaks, work conditions and the like.
In addition, discussions have been difficult because of Brazil’s high taxes and unskilled workforce, neither of which meet Foxconn’s expectations.
Expectations grown from Foxconn’s Chinese origins, no doubt: it looks like a cultural divide is a big part of the impasse here.
“We’re dealing with a lot of issues, like the (Taiwanese) trying to figure out how to do business in Brazil … and Brazil figuring out how to produce these complicated products,” a government official said. “Maybe we will end up starting with something smaller.”
Smaller? Like the Kindle Fire, perhaps?
What’s strange about this report is that just a week ago, Brazil’s Minister of Scirence and Technology Aloizio Mercadante said that the Foxconn factory was “ready” and would start pumping out iPad 2s. Either that’s an outright lie, or Foxconn’s prepared to let that factory just sit empty and rotting to get the government concessions it wants.