Apple, the smartphone maker, might not have to go through policy requirement of mandatory sourcing of 30 per cent goods from within the country as the government is all set to waive off the requirement paving the way for global technology giant to open its own retail outlets in country.
Apple was finding it difficult to source goods from India as the market does not have vendors to meet its needs. Following a change in the policy last November, Apple has decided to seek government nod as the sourcing norms can now be waived for ‘state-of-the-art’ and ‘cutting-edge technology’.
The iPhone and iPad maker has also made a presentation before a committee headed by industrial policy and promotion secretary Ramesh Abhishek where it made a case for use of the special provision.
However, Apple has indicated that it may produce locally in the future, although its current sourcing from the country is limited to some chargers, which are being exported to markets such as China.
While Xiaomi and LeEco have also submitted proposals to open single-brand retail outlets in the country, their proposals have not been taken up so far.
The government allows 100 per cent FDI in the segment but companies are required to seek approval if overseas holding exceeds 49 per cent.
Apple in India
India has emerged as one of the fastest growing markets for Apple, with the company notching up over $1-billion (around Rs 7,000-crore at current exchange rate) sales revenue in 2015. Its sales grew 76 per cent during the quarter ended December 2015 even as its global sales growth slowed to 0.4 per cent. In recent months, the Steve Jobs-founded company has identified India along with China as its top markets.
At present, Apple sells through its distributors in India. It indicated in the presentation that it would open several stores but would rely on other retailers as well.