Billionaire Batista seeks partnership with Foxconn

Friday, October 21, 2011

Billionaire Brazilian businessman Eike Batista, founder of the EBX group, is expected to propose a partnership with Taiwan's Foxconn Technology Group to assemble Apple products in Brazil.

In November last year, Batista told a local website that he dreamed "of bringing an Apple assembler [to Brazil] so that we don't have to pay twice as much as in the US" for the company's products.

Batista, whose group has businesses in a number of key areas such as oil and gas, mining, energy, logistics, shipbuilding and electricity, is scheduled to meet with President Dilma Rousseff shortly.

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According to recent press reports, Foxconn has been looking for deep-pocketed Brazilian partners to go ahead with plans to invest as much as US$12bn in Brazil.

In the coming months, Foxconn is expected to start production of Apple's iPad tablet computer and iPhone smartphone at its existing plant in the southeastern Brazilian city of Jundiaí, in São Paulo state.

In September, Brazil's congress approved tax breaks for tablet computers produced domestically.

Foxconn also plans to build in Brazil two factories to produce touch screens for tablet computers, smartphones and other gadgets, Brazilian science and technology minister Aloizio Mercadante recently said.