As first rumored late last year, Apple’s manufacturing partners are full steam ahead on setting up production facilities in India, to make current generation iPhones. Domestic manufacturing is key to avoiding India’s hefty import taxes on foreign goods, allowing Apple to lower prices in the country.
The information technology ministry has approved contract manufacturer Wistron’s Rs 5,000-crore plan to make high-end Apple devices, a move that will give a big push to the government’s Make in India initiative. Wistron currently makes cheaper Apple phones in India.
Currently, Apple sells domestically-manufactured models of the iPhone SE and iPhone 6S in India. These phones are still expensive compared to average Indian wages, but would be almost 40% pricier if they were imported due to government tariffs. Both the SE and 6S are no longer sold in the United States.
“We have just approved Wistron’s Rs 5,091-crore application and it is with the Cabinet now… Wistron will make the latest iPhone models,” IT minister Ravi Shankar Prasad said.