Apple is reportedly eying an opportunity to start manufacturing its devices in India. According to a report, the Cupertino company is currently in talks with the Indian government to discuss the plausibility, and is also seeking financial incentives. “Apple wants to emulate its China model in India. The company wants financial incentives, which the concerned government departments are looking into, the WSJ cites two government officials. Also Read - Grab iPhone 11 with up to Rs 8,000 discount in India, but for a limited periodAlso Read - Apple App store removes this popular dating app for spreading misinformation
Apple is said to have sent a letter to the Indian government in November outlining its plans to set up manufacturing in India, and is also believed to have sought financial incentives. The report further says that Senior Trade Ministry authorities have met in recent weeks to discuss the matter. Now this is not the first time we are hearing about Apple being interested in setting up some sort of manufacturing in India, but Cook had said that it wouldn’t happen anytime soon. The latest report, however, doesn’t come as a big surprise. Also Read - Apple adds UPI, RuPay, net banking on App Store: How to add new payment methods
Apart from cost benefits, local manufacturing of its products in India will also ease the process of opening Apple Stores in the country. Though the Indian government has eased the norms related to FDI in single retail, there is one clause that has proved to be an obstacle for Apple — local sourcing. The government’s policy entails that Apple will have to purchase a minimum of 30 percent of manufacturing materials from local vendors after a period of three years. This is proving to be difficult since India doesn’t really have companies manufacturing parts that live up to Apple’s standards. By manufacturing its products locally, Apple will be able to bypass the local sourcing norms, and open its stores in India.
Besides being the second-fastest growing smartphone market in the world, India is also an important market for Apple. Time and again Tim Cook and co. have reiterated how important they consider India for the company’s growth in the coming decade. Back in October, Apple recorded a third consecutive quarter where iPhone sales declined. Even annual revenues fell for the first time in 15 years. But amidst this gloom, Cook mentioned that iPhone sales in India went up by more than 50 percent in fiscal year ending September 2016, compared to the same period last year.
Earlier this year, Cook also visited India, and made a couple of big announcements. For one, Apple opened a technology development center in Hyderabad, which will focus on Apple Maps. The company also announced an iOS app design and development accelerator, which will come up in Bengaluru sometime next year.