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Apple pushes for Indian batteries – Technology News

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In a development that will deepen India’s local value addition in the mobile and electronics manufacturing chain, Apple has asked its suppliers to make batteries for its forthcoming iPhone 16 domestically. This is part of the company’s plans to shift its global supply chain out of China.

According to a Financial Times report, Apple has asked its battery manufacturers, like Desay of China, to establish new factories in India. Similarly, Simplo Technology, a Taiwanese battery supplier has been asked to scale up production in India for future orders.

Earlier this week, minister of state for electronics and IT Rajeev Chandrasekhar had said that TDK, a Japanese supplier for Apple, was setting up a 180-acre facility in Manesar, Haryana, to build batteries for iPhones.

Companies like Desay and Simplo package the electric cells produced by TDK and its counterparts into modules and send them to contract manufacturers like Foxconn, which has a manufacturing base in India.

In a recent interview to FE, communications and IT minister Ashwini Vaishnaw said that after achieving success in domestic mobile manufacturing, the government is working on a strategy for export-led growth for smartphones and electronics.

“Today, India has become part of the global value chain (GVC) of mobile phones and electronics. Now we are looking at a strategy of export-led growth rather than simply import substitution and looking at our needs,” Vaishnaw said.

“A great opportunity has come our way and we have reached a level where we can rapidly grow our exports,” he had added.
There is huge scope for India to increase exports and become a GVC. For instance, Vietnam’s domestic market for mobile phones and electronics in value terms is worth $2 billion, but exports are worth $40 billion. India’s domestic market is worth $44 billion, but exports as of FY23 stood at $11 billion.

Currently, domestic sourcing of components for smartphones and electronics is around 30% in volume terms and 15-18% in value terms. China’s domestic value addition in value terms is around 30-40% and Vietnam’s at 20-25%, so India is closing in on Vietnam.

Several components, like mechanicals, chargers and PCB assemblies, are now being exported from India. India’s electronics exports during April-October of the current fiscal grew 27.7% to $15.48 billion from $12.1 billion in the same period last fiscal.

Of the incremental $3.4 billion year-on-year increase during this period, $3 billion or 88% came on the back of the increase in mobile phone exports. Of this, the largest contributor was iPhones which, at $5 billion, constituted a third of India’s electronics exports.

Mobile phone exports increased 60% during the seven-month period of FY24 to $8 billion from $4.97 billion last year. Meanwhile, iPhone exports of $5 billion during the same period have already matched the export figure of the entire FY23.

Mobile phone exports doubled between FY22 and FY23 after the production-linked incentive scheme attracted global majors such as Apple, Samsung and Bharat FIH (Foxconn), in addition to a few Indian brands.

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