March 3, 2015: The ‘Make in India’ campaign seems to be leaving an impact as the mobile handset industry could soon be manufacturing in the country. Even though the phones are being imported from China due to the unavailability of component manufacturers in the country, the new Bureau of Industry Standards (BIS) mandate that promises tax incentives in the new financial year, has prompted some of the major players to look at India as a prospective market to set up manufacturing units.
Intex Technologies is already planning big for India as Sanjay Kumar Kalirona, mobile business head of the company has been quoted in recent reports as saying, “We plan to invest about Rs 5 billion towards manufacturing in the country. We already have a factory at Baddi in Himachal Pradesh that makes various computer accessories including speakers and UPS. We make a few parts for mobile phones at the existing factory and are in talks with different state governments to set up a manufacturing plant for phones.”
What acted as a major push to most mobile phone companies is the expansion of Compulsory Registration Order (CRO), which will also include mobile phones from April. This is expected to bring down the sales of sub-standard devices in the market. Quality control and cost reductions are also the major reasons for which phone makers are looking at manufacturing in the country. The current market sentiments are suggesting that even though full-fledged manufacturing might not be possible in the near future, phone maker are looking to run assembling facilities in India.
The recently announced union budget has reduced the sops for imported mobile phones and the finance minister has also tried to boost local manufacturing. Amar Babu, president of the Manufacturers Association of Information Technology, has been quoted as saying, “The removal of customs duty on components and concessional structure of 2 per cent without CENVAT credit are positive steps to encourage mobile phone and tablet manufacturing in India.”