“Apple’s chief executive, Timothy D. Cook, may be the leader of the world’s most valuable public company, but lately he has had to act a lot like the tech industry’s top diplomat,” Jack Nicas and Paul Mozur write for The New York Times. “Last month he visited the Oval Office to warn President Trump that tough talk on China could threaten Apple’s position in the country. In March, at a major summit meeting in Beijing, he called for ‘calmer heads’ to prevail between the world’s two most powerful countries.”

“Now, with the Trump administration saying on Friday that it would move ahead with tariffs on $50 billion of Chinese products, and China having threatened retaliation, Apple is stuck in the middle,” Nicas and Mozur write. “The Trump administration has told Mr. Cook that it would not place tariffs on iPhones, which are assembled in China, according to a person familiar with the talks who declined to speak on the record for fear of upsetting negotiations. But Apple is worried China will retaliate in ways that hamstring its business, according to three people close to Apple who declined to be named because they were not authorized to speak publicly.”

Apple CEO Tim Cook and U.S. President Donald Trump at tech summit in June

ref=”http://macdailynews.com/2017/09/27/gop-tax-plan-calls-for-cutting-the-corporate-tax-rate-from-35-percent-to-20-percent/170927_trump_cook/” rel=”attachment wp-att-194595″> Apple CEO Tim Cook and U.S. President Donald Trump at tech summit in June 2017[/ca

“Apple fears ‘the Chinese-bureaucracy machine is going to kick in,’ meaning the Chinese government could cause delays in its supply chain and increase scrutiny of its products under the guise of national-security concerns, according to one person close to the company. Apple has faced such retaliation before, another person said,” Nicas and Mozur write. “Apple executives and lobbyists in Beijing and Washington, led by Mr. Cook, have been trying to work both sides. They have fostered close ties to the administration of the country’s leader, Xi Jinping, an effort called Red Apple by employees at Apple’s manufacturing partner Foxconn, after the official color of the Chinese Communist Party.”

Nicas and Mozur write, “Mr. Cook still sees an opening to engage on the trade issue because of disagreement inside the White House, and he doubts that a trade war — or Chinese retaliation against Apple — ultimately will happen…”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: Also from the article is a passage that attempts to answer the headline, “Since he took over Apple from its co-founder Steve Jobs, in 2011, questions about whether Mr. Cook, 57, could recreate the magic that led to the iPod and iPhone have persisted. For Mr. Cook, the analogous breakthrough — and potentially his legacy as the heir to Mr. Jobs — has come not from a gadget, but from a geography: China.”

That country [China] has enormous opportunity. There are such an amazing number of people that are moving into the middle class. It’s something like I’ve never seen in my lifetime before. – Tim Cook

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