US tech giant Apple will open a second research and development centre in China to focus on manufacturing and software development as it looks to increase its foothold in in the world’s second largest economy amid tough competition from domestic rivals. The announcement to set up second R&D centre was made by Apple CEO Tim Cook during a meeting with top Shenzhen officials at the sidelines of 2016 National Mass Innovation and Entrepreneurship Week, according to sources with the municipal government.
Around 100,000 people are developing software for Apple in Shenzhen currently, Cook, who rated the quality of Shenzhen software developers’ products as top in the world said. He said Apple planned to seize the worker advantage to increase investment on research, state-run Xinhua news agency reported. During his visit to China in August, Cook unveiled Apple’s first research center in Beijing. Shenzhen is China’s hi-tech hub, investing a whopping 4.05 per cent of its gross domestic product (GDP) into research and development, and hosting a number of top tech firms like Huawei Technologies Co Ltd and ZTE Corp.