Electronic chip company HSMC today offered to meet iPhone maker Apple’s local sourcing needs in India, even as the US technology giant is lobbying against any such mandatory requirement for its “cutting edge” products.
“We require customers like Apple. If Apple decides to source 30 per cent of components from India then within 3-4 years semiconductor fab would be ready and provide chips required by it,” a senior executive from Hindustan Semiconductor Manufacturing Corporation (HSMC) told PTI.
HSMC in partnership with Europe’s largest semiconductor maker STMicroelectronics and Silterra Malaysia Sdn Bhd is setting up India’s only electronic chips plant entailing investment of about Rs 29,000 crore.
Electronic chips account for major cost of smart devices.
Apple has submitted a proposal for setting up single brand retail stores in the country but has sought exemption from local sourcing norms, saying it makes state-of-the-art and cutting edge technology products for which local sourcing is not possible.
The Finance Ministry has rejected the Apple’s proposal.
However, the Ministry of Commerce has taken a line that the 30 per cent local sourcing requirement can be waived for high-end technology products and will again try for exempting Apple from this norm.
India Electronics & Semiconductor Association has said that industry is ready to fulfil requirements of Apple in phased manner for making iPhone in the country if the smart devices major provides purchase commitment to local firms.
“In a phased manner Apple’s requirement can be met provided it commits sourcing from India. However, a clear understanding is required from Apple in order to put those technology nodes required for Apple on priority basis at our plant,” the HSMC executive said.
Even if all chipsets cannot be made here, most of them can be produced locally, the executive added.
“HSMC is basically looking for a committed customer to create these fab technology. This would be great start if Apple sources 30 per cent components from India. Apple can have phased indigenous development programme,” he said.