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Business

Microsoft closing 2 handset plants in China

GUANGZHOU, China -- Microsoft intends to close its two factories in China that manufacture mobile phones by the end of March, cutting roughly 9,000 jobs.

     The U.S. software giant inherited the factories in Dongguan and Beijing when it acquired the handset division of Nokia last April. When Microsoft announced plans in July to cut 18,000 jobs as part of its restructuring, the future of those plants was assumed to be in jeopardy, given the heated competition in the smartphone market and rising labor costs in China. Some of the production will be shifted to Vietnam.

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