Apple’s CEO visits Ireland after cancelling data centre plans

Apple’s CEO Tim Cook continued his current European trip by visiting Ireland yesterday. This came after visits to cities such as Amsterdam, where he was joined by a famous iPhone photographer.

Cook’s visit to Ireland came slightly more than a month after his company scrapped plans to build a new data centre in that country.

The head of Apple shared pictures from his Ireland stopover on Twitter and said that he enjoyed a “wonderful time back in Cork visiting our Apple family and friends”. Throughout the visit, he mingled with Apple fans, and he also made an appearance at The English Market in Cork.

According to Irish news site the Evening Echo, Cook also officially opened a brand new extension to the company’s operations at its headquarters in Ireland. Around 1,400 new job opportunities will reportedly be created here.

The firm stated: “Apple is Cork’s largest private employer and we are proud that many of the team have been with us for decades. Cork is also home to Apple’s only wholly owned manufacturing facility in the world. It provides ‘configure-to-order’ iMacs which are for customers across Europe, Middle East and Africa.”

In Dublin, Cook visited the developers of Hostelworld. He also had discussions with Taoiseach (prime minister) Leo Varadkar, who wrote about the experience on Twitter. Although it’s not immediately apparent what the topic of their discussion was, Varadkar described it as a “good meeting”.

It would, of course, be easy to describe Cook’s visit to Ireland as a PR exercise to restore Apple’s ailing image after it cancelled plans for the $1bn data centre last month.

Apart from that, Apple and Ireland are still fighting with the EU about their tax relationship. In 2017, Cook was described as being “disrespectful to the Irish people” following his refusal to meet a government committee that was investigating his company’s tax affairs in that country.


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