Saturday, December 28, 2019

Business writer sees Wisconsin falling out of Foxconn's 'plans'

The business news service Bloomberg carried informed commentary this week documenting the disappearing rationale for Foxconn ever building flat-screen devices far from Asia in Wisconsin.
Sharp's Japan Play Doesn't Bode Well for Wisconsin
The U.S. state increasingly looks like being squeezed out by Foxconn adding capacity elsewhere. 
Despite a ground-breaking ceremony in 2018 featuring Trump and Foxconn founder Terry Gou, however, the expansion hasn’t taken off and the state and Foxconn are enaged in a high-stakes game of poker over tax credits. Now, the Sharp and JDI deal could push the Midwesterners, who were promised 3,000 jobs, further to the sidelines.  
It's a scenario feared ever since Walker sketched out his doomed re-election campaign's Hail Mary on a paper napkin and for which Wisconsin taxpayers and Racine County residents are holding the bag.

Though I have to point out that Walker repeatedly promised Foxconn would bring 13,000, family-supporting jobs:
As he said on Twitter.
Foxconn is bringing 13,000 high-tech jobs to Wisconsin -- the biggest jobs announcement in our state’s history! 4:50 PM - 26 Jul 2017 
Oh, wait: On August 2nd, it's tweeted as "at least 13,000 jobs
Yet, of late, Foxconn hasn't been able to hit relatively minuscule or qualifying job targets. 

And while company officials have said they can't find enough qualified workers for the Wisconsin facility, Foxconn is ramping up the use of robots in their other plants, as I noted in February, 2018:

I also saw this report today with a Wisconsin angle about the company's plans for using artificial intelligence and robots in its facilities:
Foxconn Details Five-Year Investment Plan For AI Development
Foxconn has been working on ways to fully automate its production lines for quite some time now, with around 60,000 of its factory workers being replaced by robots in mid-2016. 
Its new plant in Wisconsin which is currently under construction was also reported to be fully powered by robots once operational, so it remains to be seen how effectively Foxconn could combine the concept of automation with AI applications designed to support smart manufacturing.
I have long-believed that Foxconn's buildings will be eventually sold and re-purposed for cookie-cutter production and assembly work in the industrial park corridor along I-94 North/South served by overbuilt new interchanges pushed through the Legislature by hometown party Boss Vos, as I wrote in February:
Even if Foxconn disappears, Sprawl King Vos is a winner
WI GOP Assembly Speaker Robin Vos managed in a state without two spare potholes-filling nickels to rub together to steer to and through his district a quarter of a billion federal and state road-and-interchange widening dollars that will trigger sprawl beyond bulldozed Mount Pleasant farms even if Foxconn never diverts a gallon of Lake Michigan water to produce a single big screen LCD TV.
I've been following the Foxconn story for more than 30 months. 

Here is one post with more than 360 items and many more references and links:

From NBC Nightly News, 7/21/19
I also recommend following anything Bruce Murphy at Urban Milwaukee has to say on the subject.

As well as the the investigative online site The Verge: This piece, for example, weaves together and documents many of Foxconn's broken promises, shifting goals, abandoned ancillary projects and other troubles which Walker, company officials and Donald Trump have dumped on Wisconsin's new Democratic Governor Tony Evers, state and local budgets, Wisconsin law, natural resources and public expectations.


Scott Wanker said...

What if it's 26,000 jobs?

Or maybe even 52,ooo jobs?

It could be!



Noting wrong with a little exaggeration here and there- RIGHT?

It's not like I am in bed with the Russians!

I don't like golden showers unless it's real money to help me put food on my family!

I was the governor!

I earned my wingnut welfare!

Maynard McKillen said...

Cut the ties that bind Wisconsin to FoxCon's lies and empty promises!
Not another cent to these weasels!