Apple, BHP both issue warnings over coronavirus - RTHK
A A A
Temperature Humidity
News Archive Can search within past 12 months

Apple, BHP both issue warnings over coronavirus

2020-02-18 HKT 08:35
Share this story facebook
  • Employees applaud as a customer enters a reopened Apple Store in Beijing. Both Apple and the world's biggest giant have warned of a possible impact from the coronavirus. File photo: AP
    Employees applaud as a customer enters a reopened Apple Store in Beijing. Both Apple and the world's biggest giant have warned of a possible impact from the coronavirus. File photo: AP
US tech giant Apple and the world's biggest miner BHP both warned on Monday that the coronovirus is affecting their operations.

Apple said disruption from Covid-19 had hit both production and demand in China, and it was "experiencing a slower return to normal conditions" than planned.

"We do not expect to meet the revenue guidance we provided for the March quarter," it said in a statement, adding that worldwide iPhone supply would be "temporarily constrained" and demand in China had been affected.

Apple had forecast revenue of US$63 billion to US$67 billion for the second quarter to March.

The Covid-19 virus death toll exceeds 1,800 in China, where it has infected more than 72,300 after emerging in Hubei province.

Elsewhere, hundreds more have been infected and the virus has sparked panic buying, economic jitters as well as the cancellation of high-profile sporting and cultural events.

IMF chief Kristalina Georgieva said there could be a cut of around 0.1-0.2 percentage points to global growth but stressed there was much uncertainty about the virus's economic impact.

Apple said that "while our iPhone manufacturing partner sites are located outside the Hubei province -- and while all of these facilities have reopened -- they are ramping up more slowly than we had anticipated.

"All of our stores in China and many of our partner stores have been closed," it added.

"Additionally, stores that are open have been operating at reduced hours and with very low customer traffic. We are gradually reopening our retail stores and will continue to do so as steadily and safely as we can."

BHP warned that demand for resources could be hit by the coronavirus unless the epidemic is contained by the end of March.

The resources giant warned demand for its products would likely dip as a result of the novel coronavirus outbreak in China, with oil, copper and steel use all set to decline unless if the disease continues to spread.

"If the viral outbreak is not demonstrably well contained within the March quarter, we expect to revise our expectations for economic and commodity demand growth downwards," it said in a statement. (AFP)