Apple’s main mobile maker Foxconn is preparing to shift production to other parts of China as Covid curbs continue to tighten across the country.
Sources told Reuters that the production of the iPhone could slump as much as 30 per cent following the factory disruption.
The main plant in Zhengzhou employs over 200,000 people and has been under increasing pressure to stamp out spiralling Covid numbers.
China has adopted an ultra-strict zero-COVID-19 policy since the outbreak of the pandemic, pushing local areas to quickly stamp out infections with full-blown lockdowns.
Foxconn banned dining at canteens at Apple’s Zhengzhou plant on 19 October, telling workers to eat meals in dormitories, Reuters reported.
It is not clear how many people are currently infected in the area, but authorities have reported 264 locally transmitted cases in Zhengzhou, the capital of central Henan province, since 19 October.
Footage was released over the weekend showing workers flee the site over fears of more stringent measures being imposed on the area.
It is understood that Foxconn is trying to boost production across other factories, including in Shenzhen city.
The potential threat to production in the run up to Christmas comes at a bad time for the tech giant.
Despite posting a relatively upbeat third quarter results compared to the rest of Silicon Valley, Apple said it expected a revenue drop in the final quarter as the strength of the dollar chips away at margins.
Apple and Foxconn were not immediately available for comment.