Apple to Reportedly Seek Production of MacBooks in Thailand

Apple is reported to be in discussion with key suppliers to expand the production of MacBooks into Thailand. News of this comes as the Cupertino company continues to diversify its supply chain out of China.

Word comes by way of Nikkei Asia, which has heard that Apple is heavily looking at Thailand as an alternative to China in terms of a production hub. Speaking with three suppliers said to be directly involved in these conversations, Apple is claimed to be in discussions with manufacturing suppliers in Thailand regarding “possible assembly and production of components and modules for MacBooks.”

In the report, one source said that Apple has requested the manufacturer to set up a facility in Vietnam for MacBooks. However, the unnamed manufacturer posed an idea and said, “We offered an alternative option of building the product at our Thailand plants which still have a massive space that can be reserved for the client.”

A second anonymous manufacturing source said that they are building a new facility in Thailand for Apple. This new plant is believed to be used to manufacture MacBooks and other products and is expected to be ready this year. Finally, a third supplier is completing a trial phase for producing MacBooks on their factory lines in Thailand this year. Though, they are also looking at Vietnam as a backup.

Currently, Apple has seen the mass production of its Apple Watch in Thailand for more than a year. The company has been aggressively looking to transition production out of China and decrease its dependence on the country.

Last year, as China’s geopolitical uncertainties continued to escalate, analysts believed Apple would continue to consider its global supply chain management and reduce business in China. However, by expanding into regions like Thailand and Vietnam, it may take Apple upwards of five years to fully reduce that core dependence it has on China.