Amid political pressure to create more jobs in the U.S., Apple Chief Executive Tim Cook has emphasized his commitment to the company's German and European suppliers. "They are the key to Apple's success, they will remain the key to Apple's success in the future," Mr. Cook said on Tuesday during a visit to Apple supplier Dula in Germany's northwestern city of Vreden.
The company makes tables and other furniture used in Apple stores in Europe and other countries and will fit out Apple's massive new headquarters in Cupertino, California. "There is nothing comparable to German craftsmanship," said Mr. Cook, inspecting his yet unfinished new desk.
"Europe is incredibly important for Apple," Mr. Cook explained. "We have 4,600 suppliers in Europe, and we have already spent €11 billion ($11.7 billion) on the continent."
Apple is under pressure in Europe due to the European Commission's demand for €13 billion in back taxes from the tech giant after ruling that long-time subsidies offered by Ireland amounted to illegal state aid.
Both Ireland and Apple are appealing the surprise decision from August, arguing that Brussels overstepped its authority.