One of Apple’s main suppliers is trying to strike a delicate balance in China.
Foxconn (HNHPF) has to comply with some of the toughest Covid rules in the world making sure Apple ( AAPL ) shipments aren’t severely disrupted just before the key holiday season begins.
The Taiwanese company, which has been struggling to contain a Covid outbreak at its sprawling campus in the Chinese city of Zhengzhou, has rehired for the facility and is offering bonuses for staff who had recently left, according to a statement published in a from the company’s WeChat accounts.
Foxconn’s statement came just a day after Apple said it expects iPhone 14 shipments to be hit by China’s Covid crackdown, which has “significantly reduced capacity” at its Zhengzhou facility , the largest iPhone factory in the world.
“The epidemic has disrupted our work and life, but … the company has achieved important results in the current epidemic prevention measures,” Foxconn said on its Zhengzhou recruitment WeChat account on Monday.
“Production and the order of life in the park have gradually normalized,” the statement added.
Anxious workers had reportedly fled the locked facility. Videos of many people leaving Zhengzhou on foot have gone viral on Chinese social media in recent days. Foxconn is stepping up measures to bring back its staff.
If they return, staff who left between Oct. 10 and Nov. 5 will receive a one-time bonus of 500 yuan ($69), the company said. The new workers will be paid 30 yuan ($4) per hour, according to the publication.
Last Wednesday, Chinese authorities imposed a seven-day lockdown the manufacturing area that houses the Foxconn plant.
Workers will be able to start work as soon as the “district-level lockdown” is lifted, Foxconn said in the WeChat post, at which point employees will be picked up and taken to the factory for a closed-loop system , where the staff work and live on site.