Apple to delay reopening of retail stores in China

FILE PHOTO: A person riding a shared bicycle is seen outside a closed Apple store near the West Lake in Hangzhou after the city imposed new measures to prevent and control the new coronavirus, in Zhejiang province, China February 4, 2020. China Daily via REUTERS

(Reuters) - Apple Inc AAPL.O is extending its retail store closures in China due to the coronavirus outbreak, even as it worked towards opening its corporate offices and contact centers, the iPhone maker said on Friday.

The company earlier this month said it would shut all of its official stores and corporate offices in mainland China until Feb.9 due to the outbreak.

“We are working toward re-opening our corporate offices and contact centers the week of February 10, and we are making preparations to reopen our retail store,” the company said in a statement.

“We will continue to update our customers as opening dates are finalised.”

Apple remains heavily reliant on China both for smartphone sales as well as for its supply chain and manufacturing.

Reporting by Amal S, Ayanti Bera in Bengaluru; Editing by Sriraj Kalluvila