The world’s largest drone manufacturer DJI is planning to strengthen its U.S. presence by promoting cooperation with local government agencies and building a new plant in the country. The U.S. authorities have recently expressed their concerns over the possibility of DJI’s drones leaking sensitive data to the Chinese government. However, the company currently occupies almost 80 percent of the North American drone market.
DJI plans to promote localized production in hopes that it will help increase regional sales. The new plant will use existing warehouses in California to assemble parts supplied from China. It will become DJI’s first unmanned aircraft assembly base outside of China.
Currently, DJI assembles drones in Shenzhen, where its headquarters are located, and exports them to the United States. The company’s drones have not yet been struck with any tariffs from the U.S., but DJI sees that threat looming over its products. The manufacturer hopes to reduce tariff risks through the construction of new factories, which will also make it more likely for the U.S. government agencies to purchase and make use of the company’s products. This move to produce drones in the U.S. comes soon after the company released its “Government Edition” drone, that features more stringent security and encryption protocols to meet U.S. cybersecurity standards.