Apple will begin producing some of its MacBook computers in Vietnam in 2023, according to a Nikkei Asia report on Tuesday.
The US tech giant has been planning to shift some of its MacBook production to Vietnam for the last two years, Nikkei Asia said, adding that the company’s assembly partner Foxconn could begin producing MacBooks in the country as soon as May.
Apple makes around 20 million to 24 million MacBooks each year, according to the report.
Since this year, the US tech giant has been working to expand production outside of China. The main destinations are India and Vietnam, where Apple has established large-scale production bases with its supply chain partners.
Apple was reportedly in talks in August to move some production for its Apple Watches, MacBooks, and HomePods to Vietnam. Several key Apple suppliers, such as Foxconn, Luxshare, Pegatron, and Wistron, have also expanded their existing production facilities in Vietnam.
The company already produces some older iPhone models in facilities in India and Brazil.
However, shifting production from China is complicated and will take a while. Known as the world's factory, China has the most comprehensive manufacturing infrastructure and sufficient skilled labor that are hard to find elsewhere.
At present, more than 90% of Apple devices are made in China. As a result of supply chain diversification, this figure will drop to around 75% by 2025, according to an analysis by JPMorgan.
China, with a population of 1.4 billion, is Apple's third largest market, trailing only the Americas and Europe. Operating profit from Apple's China operations totaled $31 billion last year, surpassing figures from Alibaba and Tencent, China's top tech firms.