New Delhi: iPhone maker Apple has been hitting stumbling blocks in India as it tries to increase production, the Financial Times has reported.
The tech giant had earlier sent product designers and engineers from California and China to train locals and establish production in south India.
While Apple has been producing lower-end iPhones in India since 2017, last September, Indian suppliers started making flagship models within weeks of their launch in China, where virtually all Apple hardware is made. But challenges are still many, says the report.
“At a casings factory in Hosur run by Tata, 50% of components produced is fit to be sent to Foxconn, Apple’s assembly partner, while Apple’s goal is zero defects. A person involved in Apple operations said the process of expanding to India is slow in part because of logistics, tariffs and infrastructure.”
Apple’s diversification into Southeast Asia has been smoother thanks to the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership, a free trade agreement.
The company, Reuters noted in its report quoting the FT report, has been keen to shift production away from China which until recently had strict COVID-19-related restrictions. Geopolitical tensions between Beijing and Washington, too, are at a high right now.
Last month, Union commerce minister Piyush Goyal said that Apple was looking to scale up manufacturing in India to 25%.
“They are already doing 5-6% of their manufacturing in India. If I am not mistaken, they are targeting to go up to 25% of their manufacturing,” Goyal said at a meeting with tech companies in Gujarat.
“They launched the most recent models from India, manufactured in India,” he said.