‘Apple supplier Wistron to assemble key iPhone parts in new India plant’

Reuters New Delhi | Updated on February 03, 2020 Published on February 03, 2020

Wistron assembles Apple’s 6S and 7 iPhone models in Bengaluru   -  Mike Segar

The move will save on import tax, which is now revised to 20%

Taiwan’s Wistron Corp plans to assemble printed circuit boards (PCBs) for iPhones at its new plant in southern India, said two sources, highlighting Apple Inc’s push to expand manufacturing in the world’s second-biggest smartphone market.

The local assembly of PCBs by Wistron’s India unit will be a first for the contract manufacturer, which began making Apple’s low-priced SE model in Bengaluru in 2017. It currently assembles the 6S and 7 iPhone models there as well. Once assembled, or populated with components, PCBs account for about half the cost of a smartphone.

Wistron’s second iPhone plant, around 65 km from Bengaluru, is expected to become operational by April, said the sources, adding that it will make iPhone 7 and 8 models, some of which will be exported. The facility will be capable of producing up to 8 million smartphones annually, they said.

The plan is part of Wistron’s ₹30-billion ($422.12 million) investment proposal submitted to the Karnataka government in 2018.

Import tax

The deepening of PCB assembly in India will help California-based Apple save on import taxes on smartphone components, levied by Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s government to boost local manufacturing and create new jobs.

On Saturday, the Budget said it will begin taxing imports of populated PCBs at a higher 20 per cent, from the previous rate of 10 per cent, from April.

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Published on February 03, 2020
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