County backs trade zone for Flextronics manufacturing plant

Oct 16, 2013
Austin American Statesman


Travis County commissioners gave their blessing Tuesday for a foreign trade zone designation for a Northwest Austin computer manufacturing plant that will build an undisclosed new computer


Flextronics America is looking at hiring 879 new workers at its expanding facility that would build a “second-generation” machine that is currently being manufactured in China, said John Schell, the company’s director of program management. Schell said he could not say who that company would be


The American-Statesman first reported the company’s plans Monday evening, and they come amid speculation that Apple Inc.’s new line of Macintosh desktop computers will be built in Austin


Local officials said Tuesday the new, mostly semi-skilled manufacturing jobs will be a benefit to the Austin area


“This is a key piece of infrastructure as we move forward to make Central Texas more competitive in manufacturing,” said Dave Porter, senior vice president of economic development at the Greater Austin Chamber of Commerce


In regions with existing foreign trade zones, such as Austin, the U.S. Department of Commerce typically grants applications when they have local government support. In essence, such a designation creates a zone that lies outside of U.S. trade jurisdiction. Companies in such areas can receive and warehouse parts and not have to pay customs duties, unless it sends its final product into the United States


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