President-elect Donald Trump will reportedly be meeting with executives from major tech companies including Apple and Facebook this week.
According to a report from Recode, Alphabet CEO Larry Page, Apple CEO Tim Cook, and Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg are among those planning to attend the meeting. Top execs from other Silicon Valley companies like Microsoft, Cisco, IBM, Intel, and Oracle are also on the guest list, Recode said.
Though Recode noted many of the companies declined to comment, Oracle CEO Safra Catz said in a statement she plans to tell Trump “we are with him and will help in any way we can.” Catz also said tax code reforms, a reduction in regulation, and better trade deals would make the U.S. technology sector “stronger and more competitive than ever.”
The meeting comes just ahead of Trump’s January 20 inauguration and as Silicon Valley tries to find its place under an administration that will be very different from that of the last eight years.
On the campaign trail, Trump took aim at the outsourcing practices of companies like Apple, saying he would “get Apple to build their damn computers and things in this country instead of other countries.” In an interview with 60 minutes, Cook countered by observing the president doesn’t have the authority to halt outsourcing and anyway the United States lacks the number of skilled manufacturing workers Apple would need to move iPhone production stateside.
Still, it seems Apple is entertaining the notion of making its iPhones in the United States. The companyreportedly asked two partners – Foxconn and Pegatron – to price out the costs of moving production to the United States. Foxconn was said to have humored the request, and last week it slipped the company is planning a several-billion-dollar investment in the United States.
There has been no word yet on whether any teleco execs will be invited to the meeting, but if Catz’s statements are any indication their interests might get some representation regardless.
At an investor conference last week, T-Mobile CFO Braxton Carter and AT&T CEO Randall Stephensonboth noted the benefits of corporate tax reform and relaxed regulation. In his comments, Stephenson seemed to peg corporate tax reform as the most promising possibility, noting it would boost productivity and capital intensity in the industry.
Filed Under: Industry regulations