IT and telecom hardware makers expect the government to extend differential duty structure on mobile phones for 10 years while bringing personal computers under the regime to give a boost to domestic manufacturing.

The government in the last budget had announced differential excise duty structure for mobile handsets, which gave domestic manufacturers cost benefit of about 11 per cent over imported phones.

“Duty structure on mobile handsets and tablets should be continued for another 10 years. Similar duty structure may be introduced on parts, components and accessories of mobile handsets and tablets,” Indian Cellular Association National President Pankaj Mohindroo told PTI.

Mohindroo is also the Chairman of Fast Track Task Force — a joint body between industry and government, to promote the manufacturing of mobile devices in India. The panel has set to achieve a manufacturing target of 500 million handsets and generation of 15 lakh jobs by 2019.

PC makers like Dell, Lenovo and Intel have also sought extension of similar duty structure to encourage manufacturing of the products in the country.

“Several IT hardware players have their manufacturing facilities in India that are currently under-utilised due to weak demand. The suggested duty differential will spur the domestic consumption leading to increased production, thereby boosting manufacturing by these players,” Intel South Asia Director Marketing and Market Development Sandeep Aurora said.

Lenovo India Director for Integrated Operations Vinod K Srivastava said that he hopes that the government rationalises the tax structure to promote manufacturing of desktops and notebooks, as has already been done for tablets and mobile phones.

The Manufacturers’ Association for Information Technology (MAIT) and the ICA have also sought the government to come up with a tax structure that promotes manufacturing of components used for PCs and mobile devices in the country.

“There is no availability of components, we still rely on China. All the top chip vendors and the semiconductor vendors or component vendors should be permitted to create a component hub in the country. Government can create free economic zones.

“Import and storage of goods should be allowed in these zones without custom transfer pricing lot. The transfer price should be applicable at goods which are sold from the component trading hub not when they are brought as stock,” MAIT Vice President Nitin Kunkolienkar said.