Apple and its suppliers, including Foxconn, are gearing up to dramatically increase iPhone production in India, targeting an annual output of over 50 million units within the next two to three years. This ambitious plan will elevate India’s role in the global iPhone production landscape, aiming to account for a quarter of the worldwide output.
What to know? According to a report by WSJ, the expansion is part of Apple’s broader strategy to diversify its manufacturing base beyond China, amidst geopolitical uncertainties and trade tensions with the U.S. The move also aligns with India’s rising stature as a manufacturing hub, bolstered by Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s incentives and the country’s political stability.
A key element of this expansion is a new Foxconn plant in Karnataka, set to commence operations in April, with a production goal of 20 million handsets annually in its initial phase. This plant, along with another proposed mega-plant and expanded production at existing facilities, including one recently acquired by Indian conglomerate Tata in Chennai, form the backbone of Apple’s ramp-up plan.
Apple’s wider plan: The push into India also includes establishing a manufacturing stage for lower-end iPhones and diversifying the network of core suppliers within the country. Notably, Japan’s TDK is set to build a new factory in Haryana to produce battery cells for Indian-made iPhones.
Despite these significant strides in India, Apple and its suppliers remain committed to China, with Apple CEO Tim Cook reaffirming China’s critical role as both a production hub and consumer market. However, the Indian expansion, combined with other investments, signifies Apple’s intent to reduce its reliance on China and tap into India’s potential as a major player in global electronics manufacturing.
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