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On February 17, tech giant Apple announced that the company would likely see losses in revenue due to an iPhone shortage.
China, which leads the world in overall manufacturing output, is on a partial lockdown due to the spread of the deadly coronavirus (COVID-19) that is already responsible for the deaths of 2,004 people as of February 18.
Sources tell The Millennial Source that factories are not permitted to continue operations until receiving approval from local health and government bodies. The immobility of workers between cities has also contributed to the delay.
“Work is starting to resume around the country, but we are experiencing a slower return to normal conditions than we had anticipated," Apple said in a statement informing its investors that, due to the reduced manufacturing output, the company’s revenue would likely not meet second-quarter expectations.
Worker health is “our paramount priority”
In the statement, Apple said that the health of workers would be prioritized.
“The health and well-being of every person who helps make these products possible is our paramount priority, and we are working in close consultation with our suppliers and public health experts as this ramp continues," Apple said.
iPhone sales sky-rocketed to $56 billion US dollars in the final quarter of 2019, an 8% increase over the previous quarter.
Apple stores closed in China
All of Apple’s stores in China are closed for the time being with some outlets and offices scheduled to open gradually and operate under reduced hours.
Most multinational firms operating in China have shut down their offices and manufacturing facilities to help contain the deadly virus that has infected 74,185 people within the country.
Apple’s competitor, Huawei, has opened its Shenzhen offices
Meanwhile, China’s number one smartphone manufacturer, Huawei, has reopened its Shenzhen headquarters but all 40,000 employees who work there must abide by strict new health procedures, including temperature checks and a full disclosure of their whereabouts in the past two weeks.