Apple to start India operations in April

Apple will partner Taiwanese manufacturer Wistron for manufacturing iPhones in India.

The Dollar Business Bureau

After years of pursuing the Indian government for additional sops, Apple has finally decided to move forward with its plans of setting up its initial manufacturing facility in Karnataka. There has been no agreement, or memorandum of understanding (MoU) finalised between Apple and the Karnataka government. 

The Karnataka government on Thursday welcomed Apple Inc’s proposal of assembling iPhones in the state. “Apple’s intentions to manufacture in Bengaluru will foster cutting edge technology ecosystem and supply chain development in the state,” Karnataka IT Minister Priyank Kharge said in a tweet. 

California-based Apple has been looking to tap the Indian smartphone market, one of the fastest growing smartphone markets in the world. Last month, Apple made a presentation to the Indian government, seeking additional tax and sourcing concessions and highlighting company’s expansion plans in India. The smartphone maker seemed to be satisfied after the meeting and said it held concrete and constructive talks with the Indian government about its plans. 

Finance Minister Arun Jaitley in 2017 budget speech announced a record figure of Rs.745 crore under the modified special incentive package scheme (MSIPS) to enhance electronic manufacturing. 

The government also announced a 2% special additional duty on inbound shipments of printed circuit boards (PCBs), which accounts for a 20-30% of total smartphone cost and is usually imported since India doesn’t have fabrication units to produce the product in the domestic market. 

Earlier, Information Technology Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad said the Indian government would consider Apple’s incentives request to invest in the country.” 

The Karnataka government said it was “committed to new initiatives in the state and will provide ideal environments for investments. 

Kharge said Apple will begin assembling iPhones in state capital Bangalore by the end of April. Apple seems to be partnering with Taiwanese contract manufacturer Wistron for manufacturing iPhones in the Indian market.

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The Dollar Business Bureau - Feb 03, 2017 12:00 IST