Apple CEO Tim Cook in China again, Google’s Schmidt in North Korea

8 Jan 2013

Apple CEO Tim Cook

Apple CEO Tim Cook has embarked on his second trip to China in less than a year and has met with one of the country’s government officials, while Google’s executive chairman Eric Schmidt is in Pyongyang, North Korea, in a “personal” capacity.

Cook today met with Miao Wei, the head of China’s Ministry of Industry and Information Technology, to talk about China’s tech industry, global mobile communications, and Apple’s business in the country, CNET reported the minister’s website as having stated.

During his previous visit to China in March, Cook had also met with Chinese government officials and he visited Foxconn’s Apple factories. At the time, Cook had pledged “greater investment” in the world’s largest market for computers and mobile phones.

Since then, Apple has increased the number of its stores in China and Hong Kong to 11. At the time of Cook’s last visit, there were only six shops, Bloomberg reported.

A spokeswoman for Apple told Bloomberg no other details were available on Cook’s meeting with Miao, the length of his stay in China, or whom else he will meet.

Google’s executive chairman in North Korea

Cook isn’t the only high-tech head in Asia at the moment.

Internet search giant Google’s executive chairman Eric Schmidt arrived in North Korea yesterday with former New Mexico governor Bill Richardson.

Their nine-person delegation will have a private, four-day visit, but there’s no additional information about whom they’ll be seeing and what they’ll be doing in North Korea, a country in which most residents have no internet access.

All Google would say was that Schmidt was acting in a “personal” capacity, The Guardian reported.

More information may be revealed on 10 January, when the group is due in China and Richardson is expected to take part in a news conference.

Tina Costanza was a journalist and sub-editor at Silicon Republic