Manufacturing Permitted: Workers Not Ready to Touch Imports From China

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  • Containers full of electronic components imported from China are lying untouched
  • Despite sanitizing these, companies are finding it tough to make their work forces open these
All Images For Representation Only

An MNC that manufactures agricultural machinery is not able to get its manufacturing back on track due to the fear of coronavirus looming in the minds of its workforce. A container full of electronic components sourced from China is lying untouched and unopened in its delivery zone.

“No one is ready to open the container. We have sanitized it from outside but the content (electronic component) inside the container is lying as it is. Workers fear that they might catch coronavirus after touching these components imported from China,” said an official on terms of anonymity.

The official also informed that this container was imported from China in early April. It has been lying there untouched since it got inside the facility. The individual also confirmed that more of these containers were on their way from ports to the facility.

Conundrum over imports from China

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India, as per an earlier report by EFY, imported approximately US$60 billion worth of electronics and components in 2019. The catch – a majority of these were imported from China.

There are several other cases doing the rounds of gossip factories that workers are not ready to handle components sourced from China. It is to be noted here that several consumer electronics and smartphone brands source key components including display panels from China. The same may pose a threat to the continuation of their business models in the country.

Nitin Gadkari, in a recent webinar, has requested the MSME industry to capitalise on the opportunity and reduce dependence on imports. He had also hinted towards a possible export replace policy.

Paucity of labour and skilled work force

Paucity of labour and skilled work force is another major problem haunting manufacturing facilities and their managers. A manufacturing facility located on the outskirts of a village is having trouble transporting ‘outsiders’ into the factory.

“The only way to our factor is through the village. Villagers are not allowing outsiders to pass through fearing the spread of coronavirus. While our factory employs majority of villagers, we still lack skilled labour when it comes to finalising the products,” the factory manager told EFY.

This factory is sitting on order books worth crores. Not only it is one of the few suppliers to electronics manufactures in India, but it also imports components to other countries including China.

Another company that contract manufacturers chargers for a leading smartphone company is unable to start operations because most of its skilled workforce has either travelled, or is travelling back to its hometowns. This startup had originated only last year.

“We are running out of cash and surviving even three more weeks is now a challenge,” exclaimed the owner.

Author – Mukul Yudhveer SinghAn avid reader, Mukul finds peace in books and technology. He’s as passionate about writing as he is about cricket and Playstation. If not writing or reading, you will most likely find him drawing tattoo designs or analyzing political campaigns.

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