- Production-linked incentive schemes have driven smartphone manufacturing in India since 2020.
- ICEA chairman, Pankaj Mohindroo said that India will hit about $60 billion in exports by 2026.
- Phone manufacturers such as Xiaomi Corp, Oppo and Vivo have also started holding talks with Indian contract phone makers to avail the cash incentives
India has recorded more than $10 billion worth of smartphone exports in the fiscal year ending March 31, buoyed by government incentives towards local manufacturing.
The record data was provided by the India Cellular and Electronics Association (ICEA) to IANS.
Production-linked incentive schemes have driven smartphone manufacturing in India since 2020. ICEA data showed that India currently exports mobile phones to the UAE, the US, the Netherlands, the UK and Italy, among other countries.
Last month, ICEA chairman, Pankaj Mohindroo told Bloomberg, “We foresee another 10-fold growth by 2026 riding on the key pillars of Apple and Samsung’s global value chain ecosystem, as well as large domestic companies such as Lava. India will hit about $60 billion in exports by 2026.”
Riding the incentive wave
The cash incentives offered by the PLI scheme for smartphone manufacturing propelled many companies to sign up for the program. Apple Inc.’s primary suppliers, Foxconn Technology Group, Wistron Corp. and Pegatron Corp., were among the first to commit, alongside Lava and Dixon.
Apple became the first smartphone player in India to have exported $1 billion worth of iPhones in the month of December. It currently manufactures iPhones 12, 13, 14 and 14 Plus in the country.
Other phone manufacturers such as Xiaomi Corp, Oppo and Vivo have also started holding talks with Indian contract phone makers such as Lava International Ltd. and Dixon Technologies India Ltd., to avail cash incentives laid out by the Indian government. Bloomberg reported that in case the deal goes through, the companies would begin assembling the phones and exporting from their plants as early as this year.
Lava is already exporting smartphones to the US and Africa while Dixon makes Motorola phones for the US market.
The US-China technology war and supply-chain bottlenecks due to the pandemic, have prompted global manufacturers to reduce their reliance on a China-centric supply chain and India along with Southeast Asia is emerging as an alternative.