Michigan economic development officials are trying to lure a $4.2 billion investment by Taiwan-based Foxconn Technology Group to create 5,000 jobs in Southeast Michigan for the assembly of liquid-crystal display screens for the automotive, aviation and defense industries, according to state government sources.
One state source who requested anonymity confirmed to Crain's Detroit Business that global electronics assembly giant Foxconn, whose official name is Hon Hai Precision Industry Co. Ltd., is considering an expansion in Michigan in the magnitude of $4.2 billion and 5,000 jobs. A second source confirmed the potential number of new jobs that could be created if the Snyder administration can win over an unspecified Asian company.
The push comes after Snyder made a strong endorsement of a new set of tax incentives that's making its way through Michigan's Legislature.
Gov. Rick Snyder is making a one-day trip to Asia this weekend as part of an effort to lure a major electronics manufacturer, according to one state source who spoke on condition of anonymity.
Snyder on June 2 did not deny he was headed to Asia this weekend to meet with Foxconn representatives when caught by a Crain's reporter walking into the Shepler's Mackinac Island Ferry dock. The governor has been on the island all week for the Detroit Regional Chamber's annual Mackinac Policy Conference.
"Well, I've got a full weekend planned," Snyder said. "Most people wouldn't be interested where I'm spending my time."
When asked whether new tax incentive legislation is vital to getting Foxconn to build a plant in Michigan, the governor reiterated his support.
"Well, I made my statement yesterday: This bill is important to some real things going on," Snyder said.
Snyder declined to comment on the negotiations.
"I'm not trying to be difficult, but you can appreciate where I'm coming from," Snyder told a Crain's reporter.
One state source told Crain's on Friday that the Michigan Economic Development Corp. has a nondisclosure agreement in place with Foxconn, suggesting negotiations between the state and company have reached an advanced stage. The newspaper reported that sites in Pontiac and Lyon Township are under consideration, but that Florida and Arizona are also pitching for the investment.
Foxconn Chairman Terry Gou had said in January that the company had a tentative plan to invest more $7 billion in the United States. Plastics News reported in January that the company was considering plans to build an injection molding plant in Pennsylvania, as part of the $7 billion display panel project.
For a full version of this story, see CrainsDetroit.com.