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Foxconn aims to cut $2.9 billion from expenses in 2019: Bloomberg

Visitors are seen at a Foxconn booth at the World Intelligence Congress in Tianjin, China May 19, 2018. REUTERS/Stringer

(Reuters) – Taiwan’s Foxconn (2317.TW) aims to cut 20 billion yuan ($2.88 billion) from expenses in 2019 as the company faces “a very difficult and competitive year”, Bloomberg reported on Wednesday, citing an internal memo.

Foxconn, formally known as Hon Hai Precision Industry Co Ltd, counts Apple Inc (AAPL.O) as one of its top customers for assembling iPhones.

The iPhone business will need to reduce expenses by 6 billion yuan next year and Foxconn plans to eliminate about 10 percent of non-technical staff, the report said.

Earlier this month, Japan’s Nikkei daily reported that Apple had told Foxconn and rival Pegatron Corp (4938.TW) to halt plans for additional production lines dedicated to the iPhone XR.

Last week, Foxconn posted a weaker-than-expected rise in quarterly profit amid warning signs from key customer..

Foxconn did not immediately respond to Reuters request for comment.

Apple shocked investors earlier this month with a lower-than-expected sales forecast for the Christmas quarter due to weakness in emerging markets, prompting suppliers including U.S. firm Lumentum Holdings Co (LITE.O), British chipmaker IQE (IQE.L) and screen maker Japan Display (6740.T) to issue warnings about their financial results.

Apple’s shares have fallen 8.85 percent since Nov. 12, after one of its facial recognition suppliers, Lumentum, cut its outlook.

Reporting by Arjun Panchadar in Bengaluru; Editing by Arun Koyyur

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