Thu, 04 Jun 2020

Amazon gives up on plans for Big Apple

By Jay Jackson, South Africa News.Net
16 Feb 2019, 00:02 GMT+10

NEW YORK, New York - The Big Apple has lost out on its bid to host a new headquarters for growing online retail giant Amazon.

The company on Thursday said it was withdrawing its plan to build a second headquarters, which it was calling HQ2, in New York City, because of political opposition.

Many U.S. tech firms, such as Facebook, Google and Amazon, have established headquarters in Ireland due to tax incentives offered by the government there. To site its new operation in New York involved the company seeking tax breaks, which local politicians were not prepared to allow.

Amazon said it was disappointed with the decision to pull the plug.

"After much thought and deliberation, we've decided not to move forward with our plans to build a headquarters for Amazon in Long Island City, Queens. For Amazon, the commitment to build a new headquarters requires positive, collaborative relationships with state and local elected officials who will be supportive over the long-term. While polls show that 70% of New Yorkers support our plans and investment, a number of state and local politicians have made it clear that they oppose our presence and will not work with us to build the type of relationships that are required to go forward with the project we and many others envisioned in Long Island City," Amazon said in a statement published on Thursday.

"We are disappointed to have reached this conclusion, we love New York, its incomparable dynamism, people, and culture, and particularly the community of Long Island City, where we have gotten to know so many optimistic, forward-leaning community leaders, small business owners, and residents. There are currently over 5,000 Amazon employees in Brooklyn, Manhattan, and Staten Island, and we plan to continue growing these teams."

"We are deeply grateful to Governor Cuomo, Mayor de Blasio, and their staffs, who so enthusiastically and graciously invited us to build in New York City and supported us during the process," Amazon said. "Governor Cuomo and Mayor de Blasio have worked tirelessly on behalf of New Yorkers to encourage local investment and job creation, and we can't speak positively enough about all their efforts. The steadfast commitment and dedication that these leaders have demonstrated to the communities they represent inspired us from the very beginning and is one of the big reasons our decision was so difficult."

"We do not intend to reopen the HQ2 search at this time. We will proceed as planned in Northern Virginia and Nashville, and we will continue to hire and grow across our 17 corporate offices and tech hubs in the U.S. and Canada," the Amazon statement said.

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