Apple CEO Tim Cook recently praised China for its rapid innovation and long-standing ties with the U.S. iPhone maker, according to local media reports. Cook made these remarks during his first public appearance in China in recent years, while attending the China Development Forum – a government-organized event held in Beijing. Senior government officials and CEOs of companies like Pfizer and BHP also attended the event.
Cook noted that “innovation is developing rapidly in China and I believe it will further accelerate,” as reported by The Paper news outlet. However, Cook’s visit comes at a time of increasing tensions between Beijing and Washington, and as Apple has been attempting to reduce its reliance on China for its supply chain by moving production to new up-and-coming centers such as India.
Last year, production at the world’s largest iPhone factory run by Apple supplier Foxconn was severely disrupted after China’s zero-COVID policies fueled worker unrest. During his visit, Cook also visited an Apple Store in Beijing, where pictures of his visit went viral on Chinese social media.
Cook also spoke about education during his visit, emphasizing the need for young people to learn programming and critical thinking skills. According to local media reports, he announced that Apple plans to increase spending on its rural education program to 100 million yuan.