Apple's Cook to Meet With Trump Amid China Trade Tensions

(Bloomberg) -- Apple Inc. Chief Executive Officer Tim Cook will meet with President Donald Trump at the White House on Wednesday as the company looks to head off a brewing trade war between the U.S. and China.

The sit-down between Cook and Trump will take place in the Oval Office on Wednesday afternoon and be closed to the press, according to the president’s official schedule released by the White House.

“Looking forward to my meeting with Tim Cook of Apple,” Trump said Wednesday on Twitter. “We will be talking about many things, including how the U.S. has been treated unfairly for many years, by many countries, on trade.”

Apple's Cook to Meet With Trump Amid China Trade Tensions

The Trump administration’s decision to pursue tariffs on as much as $150 billion in Chinese goods has stoked trade tensions with Beijing that could affect Apple’s business in Asia. The company’s sprawling production chain is centered in China.

Last month, Cook told attendees at a conference in Beijing that he hoped that China and the U.S. could resolve their differences on trade.

“The countries that embrace openness do exceptional and the countries that don’t, don’t,” he said. “It’s not a matter of carving things up between sides. I’m going to encourage that calm heads prevail.”

A trade war could place Apple in the Chinese government’s cross-hairs. A Communist Party newspaper last month listed the iPhone maker among the American companies that would be “most damaged” if a trade war erupted.

Apple didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment after regular business hours.

Cook was among the guests on Tuesday evening at the first state dinner of Trump’s presidency, a formal fete for French President Emmanuel Macron. The Apple chief was accompanied by Lisa Jackson, Apple’s vice president of environment and government affairs and the head of the Environmental Protection Agency under President Barack Obama.

©2018 Bloomberg L.P.