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Made in India Macbooks soon as Centre proposes to boost incentive schemes

After iPhones, we could soon see Made in India Macbooks and iPads in the market as Apple looks to broad-base it’s manufacturing in the country fueled by the Centre’s proposal to increase PLI (production linked incentive) outlay to almost Rs. 20,000 crores from the existing Rs. 7380 crores.

“We have tasted success with the iPhone production as Apple’s all the top manufacturers – Foxconn, Wistron, and Pegatron – are now making smartphones worth billions of dollars in the country. The next step for us is to get the production of MacBook and other products such as iPad in India”, a source in the ministry said.

A few months back, the tech giant had begun to manufacture the latest iPhone 14 in the country. Last month, iPhone maker Foxconn’s India unit became the first global company to receive incentives worth Rs 357.17 crore under the production-linked incentive scheme for mobile manufacturing. On the same lines, the Government wants to further boost Apple’s manufacturing ecosystem in the country especially at a time wherein several global companies are adopting a ‘China Plus One strategy’ so as to not get caught in a supply chain bottleneck.

For the same, the IT ministry- which is the nodal ministry for boosting electronics manufacturing in the country, has proposed to increase the outlay of the PLI scheme. The same would now be reviewed by the finance and other related ministries.

Under the current PLI scheme, the Centre provides incentive support of 1-4% over four years to the company. After the changes, this may be increased to 5%. The target segments under the proposed scheme include laptops, tablets, and all-in-one PCs and servers.

“We feel the earlier scheme was not sufficient to meet the disability that companies would have if they manufactured in India. Thus, with an enhanced incentive plan and a larger fund outlay, the new scheme will surely prompt companies to invest and also make in India”, the source added.

However, as of now, Apple is dicey about expanding its manufacturing beyond iPhones in India given the absence of a strong supplier base. The border tensions between India and China are also a factor as China is Apple’s biggest production base but also an equally strong sales market.

To tackle this, the company is looking to take a joint venture route where the Indian entities have a say and control. Tech companies have continually pushed the government to ease checks for allowing China’s investments in India however the Centre is taking its time in order to not hand over control to Chinese entities

Apart from Apple, the Government is looking to attract other companies like Dell and HP while building a production eco-system with enhanced and friendlier incentive schemes to achieve the status of a ‘global manufacturing hub’.

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