An assembly plant that Apple’s Taiwanese manufacturing partner Wistron Corp is setting up in Bengaluru will focus solely on assembling iPhones. Apple and the Indian government were, however, still discussing “the repatriation of long-term profits from local sales and exports.”
Actual manufacturing is much easier, given that both Foxconn and Wistron Corp are already in India. In fact, Apple seems to have decided that Wistron Corp will be the first to make the iPhone in India, most probably the iPhone SE if reports are to be believed. The Taiwanese company is known to have manufactured the iPhone SE and the iPhone 5, both of which have similar chassis.
Apple iPhone Plant In India
Apple representatives met federal and state government officials in India last week, as it lobbies hard for tax and sourcing concessions before it begins to assemble iPhones there. Apple described its discussions with Indian officials as open and constructive.
It is noteworthy that under the new political leadership of Prime Minister Narendra Modi, India is set to expedite manufacturing growth; however, neighboring country like China pauses a tough challenge as the latter boasts nearly unbeatable technological prowess and excellent assembly line production.
For Apple, India could be a huge market where, the iPhone faces tough competition from Samsung and other players in terms of price. Notably, Apple’s iPhone 6 with 16GB comes at around Rs.44, 000/- ($687.82) in India as against Samsung’s Galaxy S6 with 32GB at a price of Rs40, 000 ($625.29).
According to Counterpoint Research Market Monitor, Apple has to compete with rivals like Samsung and Micromax as iPhone only enjoys 10% market share in India.
Any final decision on manufacturing in India is, however, likely to depend on the government’s willingness to concede ground on the concessions Apple seeks. Last month, Information Technology Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad said India would consider Apple’s request for incentives with an “open mind.”