Apple signed a $320 trillion secret contract with China… What kind of content is Kyung-ju Kang’s IT cafe?

Tesla CEO Elon Musk poses during the Model 3 Indian ceremony held in Shanghai, China in January last year. [사진=AFP 연합뉴스]

While the Joe Biden administration is fiercely competing with China for global economic and military supremacy, the country’s major companies, Apple and Tesla, are attracting attention as they are showing ‘pro-China actions’. From the criticism that “there is no state before money,” there are also objections that there is nothing wrong with the free economy market. The industry expects that more companies will take a petitive approach to China, a global big market.

“Investing 324 trillion won in Apple service sanctions exemption for 5 years”

According to the information technology (IT) industry on the 11th, according to the information technology (IT) industry, the US IT-specialized media ‘The Information’ recently reported on Apple’s internal documents and interviews with anonymous officials through legal sanctions against Apple CEO Tim Cook when conducting business in China. It was reported that he had signed a secret contract with Chinese government officials to avoid the backlash.

According to the report, CEO Cook met with Chinese government officials in 2016 and signed a secret five-year contract. It is said that Apple’s chief operating officer Jeff Williams and government affairs officer Lisa Jackson signed a 1,250-word memorandum of understanding with the National Development and Reform Commission of China in Zhongnanhai, China.

The memorandum said that instead of exempting from sanctions on Apple’s payment service ‘Apple Pay’, cloud service ‘iCloud’, and the app marketplace ‘App Store’, it would support Chinese manufacturers to develop cutting-edge manufacturing technology and support Chinese talent training. contained In addition to using more parts from Chinese suppliers, it includes signing contracts with Chinese software companies.

Tim Cook, Apple CEO [사진=AP 연합뉴스]

Tim Cook, Apple CEO [사진=AP 연합뉴스]

The Information also reported that if there is no objection between the two sides, the contract period is automatically added one year to five years, and the effect is extended until May 2022, The Information reported. According to this promise, Apple is said to have invested more than $275 billion (about 324 trillion won) in China over the past five years. The media explained that Apple’s announcement of an investment of $1 billion in Didi Chuxing, a Chinese ride-hailing company, in May 2016 was also “to show goodwill to China.”

CEO Cook is evaluated as the ‘No. 1 contribution’ that made Apple successfully settle in the Chinese market. In the third quarter of this year, Apple posted a net profit of $14.56 billion (about 17 trillion won) in the Greater China market alone. That’s 70% of Apple’s total net profit.

Apple did not issue a separate statement on this. If the report is true, the close relationship with the authorities may have been behind Apple’s success as the ‘only foreign-made phone’ in China. According to US IT media Cnet, “This is how Tim Cook became a seasoned politician and built relationships with world leaders for Apple’s business.”

The controversy that Apple is particularly low-key in China has continued to arise. In May, the New York Times criticized Apple for violating its principles and handing over the personal information and data of Chinese iPhone users to the Chinese authorities. There is a big difference in temperature from litigation for security reasons even for trivial information and data in the United States or other countries.

Musk criticizes the US government… In China, ‘baptism of praise’

Tesla, another company representing the United States, is not hesitant to criticize its own government, but is constantly admiring China.

Tesla CEO Elon Musk snipped the Biden administration’s ambitious bill to promote the adoption of electric vehicles at the Wall Street Journal’s recent CEO Council event. On the other hand, he praised China, saying, “It is adapting to its status as a great power.”

Musk said, “If it were me, I would throw it all away.” This is aimed at the electric vehicle support plan included in the $1.7 trillion social welfare expenditure bill currently being promoted by the Biden administration. The bill includes an additional deduction of $4,500 (about 5,315 million won) for electric vehicles manufactured at factories in the United States where the union was formed, and an additional $500 (about 590,000 won) if US-made batteries are installed. Tesla, which continues its non-union management, has no choice but to lag behind in price competitiveness.

Tesla CEO Elon Musk left a praiseworthy comment on Xinhua News Agency's Twitter post delivering a speech by Chinese President Xi Jinping. [사진=트위터 캡처]

Tesla CEO Elon Musk left a praiseworthy comment on Xinhua News Agency’s Twitter post delivering a speech by Chinese President Xi Jinping. [사진=트위터 캡처]

On the other hand, it took a conciliatory gesture toward China. “Many Chinese bureaucrats (in the past) have seen China being swayed by its small economy. China can already show a strong presence in the global market, but they don’t seem to be aware of this fact,” he said.

This is not the first time Musk has taken a “pro-China” move. On July 1, Musk posted a comment on the official Xinhua news agency Twitter post containing a passage from President Xi Jinping’s speech on the 100th anniversary of the founding of the Communist Party of China, saying, “China’s economic prosperity is truly amazing.” “It’s even more surprising, especially in the infrastructure field,” he added. “I recommend visiting China in person.”

Hong Kong’s South China Morning Post (SCMP) said, “Musk’s tweet is a move to relieve tensions among Chinese authorities, conscious of Tesla’s safety concerns.” The remarks came out five days after they said they would take them all back.”

“China is one of Tesla’s most important markets,” Gaoxian, a Chinese economic analyst, told SCMP. Benzinga, an American economic media outlet, also said, “Musk’s comments follow Tesla’s high-profile investigation in China in recent months.” told

In an interview with China Central Television (CCTV) in March, Musk did not spare praise, saying, “China’s future will be great and it will prosper as the world’s largest economy.” As such, the biggest reason for Musk’s low position in China is sales. Despite the US-China conflict, it is enjoying the greatest popularity in the Chinese electric vehicle market. In the third quarter of this year, Tesla’s sales in China amounted to $9.015 billion (about 10.7 trillion won), accounting for 25% of global sales.

“Possibility of continuing pro-China actions by global companies

US President Joe Biden and Chinese President Xi Jinping hold a video summit [사진=AFP 연합뉴스]

US President Joe Biden and Chinese President Xi Jinping hold a video summit [사진=AFP 연합뉴스]

Although the US and China held a summit last month via video, tensions are rising in the political and economic fields. The United States even formalized a ‘diplomatic boycott’ of the Beijing Winter Olympics. In such a situation, as Apple and Tesla are implementing the ‘anti-Biden, pro-Xi Jinping’ policy, concerns about the confrontation between the US politicians and the US economic sphere are growing in the US.

An industry official said, “The Biden administration is so focused on taming so-called ‘big tech’ such as Apple, Tesla, and Google to strengthen its power, so IT companies do not like current White House officials very much. It is the perception of American companies that they infringe and set too much standard.”

He added, “The most important thing is money. For Apple and Tesla, China is the country that makes the most money, but the United States is a tax-collecting country,” he added.

Reporter Kang Kyung-joo, Hankyung.com [email protected]

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