(Bloomberg) -- Apple Inc. pledged to buy more components and accessories for its devices from Vietnam’s suppliers, a big boost for the Southeast Asian country as it emerges as a global electronics hub.

The company will increase spending on its Vietnam suppliers, according to a government website post citing Chief Executive Officer Tim Cook in a meeting with Vietnamese Prime Minister Pham Minh Chinh in Hanoi.

Apple is exploring ways to shift production of its gadgets away from China to minimize geopolitical risks. It’s exploring locales such as India and Vietnam, which has seen about a fourfold increase in companies assembling Apple products over the past decade.

Read More: Apple’s iPhone Supply Chain Splinters Under US-China Tensions

Cook said the company wants to further boost quality investment and cooperation activities in Vietnam, state-owned media VTV reported.

The prime minister said the government will set up a dedicated working group to support Apple’s expansion in the country, according to the post. He also asked Cook for help in developing a high-quality workforce. 

The Cupertino, California-based company, in a statement, said the company is increasing its commitments to Vietnam by an unspecified amount. Apple has spent nearly 400 trillion dong ($15.8 billion) in the country since 2019 through its supply chain partners, the company said.

Apple’s partners in Vietnam operate more than 70 factories with more than 250,000 employees, the post said.

Chinh also asked Apple to encourage its suppliers to tap more Vietnamese companies so they can have a deeper participation in the company’s supply chain, according to the posting.

Cook, who landed in the capital city of Hanoi Monday morning, visited with Vietnamese programmers, content creators and singers during his two-day visit to the nation’s capital, local media reported. 

Cook’s visit came after more than 60 human rights and environmental organizations called on the company to publicly oppose the detention of climate activists in Vietnam.

(Updates with additional details throughout the story.)

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