Taiwanese electronics giant Foxconn said “rumours” that it paid 180 billion yuan ($24.6 billion) as tax to China after a recent probe into its operations on the mainland had seriously hurt its reputation.
The world’s largest contract manufacturer of electronics said the allegations regarding the tax were “false content”.
Rumours were also circulated by multi-platform social media channels that about 20,000 football fields it owns would be taken back by the Chinese government, Foxconn alleged.
Chinese state media outlet the Global Times said last month that some of Foxconn’s key subsidiaries in China were the subject of tax audits.
China’s natural resources department had conducted on-site investigations on land use by Foxconn enterprises in Henan and Hubei provinces and elsewhere, it added in a report from October 22.
Zhang Wensheng, deputy dean of the Taiwan Research Institute of Xiamen University, told the Global Times the audit and land use investigations was a normal procedure that would apply to any enterprise suspected of violating laws and regulations.
Foxconn said in response that legal compliance was a “fundamental principle” of its operations.
Meanwhile, two sources close to Foxconn told Reuters later that the probe was linked to Foxconn founder Terry Gou’s run for Taiwan’s presidency.
In a statement published on its official Weibo account on Thursday, Foxconn reiterated it had always adhered to legal and compliant operations and that its production and operations remained operating normally.
The firm operates the world’s largest world’s largest iPhone factory in China’s Zhengzhou city.
- Reuters, with additional editing by Vishakha Saxena