IT ministry to form industry-specific groups for new mfg policy

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The IT ministry is constituting industry-specific groups in areas such as mobiles, automotive electronics and consumer electronics that will offer inputs for the new electronics manufacturing policy in the works.

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A senior official of the Ministry of Electronics and IT said to ET that 6-7 such specialised groups will be set up over the next 1-2 days to look at the manufacturing push in each of these areas.

While domestic manufacturing has caught on in a big way in segments like mobile handsets and consumer electronics, the new policy will focus on driving value addition in each of these areas, said the official who did not wish to be named.

The official noted that “significant progress” has already been made with regard to electronics manufacturing in the country, and setting up of new mobile factories, increased investments and several manufacturing firms making their stock market debut were all “positive signs” for the industry.

The new policy push will aim to create an ecosystem of manufacturing in the country, enable India to become a significant global player in some of these categories.

The industry groups being formed encompass areas like mobiles, medical electronics, consumer electronics, automotive electronics, solar, and electronics manufacturing services (EMS), among others.

“These groups will come out with sector-specific inputs which can be considered for incorporation in the larger electronics policy,” the official added.

Over the last two years, India has seen significant growth in production of mobile handsets, LED (Light Emitting Diode) products and televisions. Tax incentives given to local mobile phone manufacturers have spawned 40 new mobile handset manufacturing units and 30 mobile components and accessory manufacturing units in the country over the last two years.

The indigenous production of mobile handsets went up to 175 million units valued at Rs 900 billion in 2016-17, from 11 crore units valued at Rs 540 billion in 2015-16, showed official estimates.

Also, as a result of increase in domestic production of mobile handsets, the share of imported handsets in total domestic demand is declining. The import of mobile handsets decreased to Rs 400 billion in 2016-17, from an estimated Rs 560 billion in 2015-16.

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