Government is likely to reject US smartphone giant Apple’s demands for cuts in taxes and import duties, ET Now reported. Apple officials are scheduled to meet senior officials from various ministries on Wednesday. Communications & IT minister Ravi Shankar Prasad had last week said the Centre would consider Apple’s request for various incentives with an “open mind” and it would “very much like” it to set up its base in India.
Apple, the biggest smartphone manufacturer from US, had demanded a 15-year customs duty holiday on import of iPhone kits, new and used capital equipment, and consumables to establish an iPhone production facility in India, among other incentives, The Indian Express has reported.
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Apple is likely to put forth the demands, and a reasoning for them, before senior government officials in New Delhi on Wednesday. Earlier, some government officials had asserted that any policy on additional concessions to foreign companies needs to be contingent on potential local sourcing and value addition.
“Since there is a strong co-relation between value-addition and job creation, value-addition remains a priority for us. The Make-in-India programme would suffer if every foreign player starts to demand concessions without actually doing much of value addition here,” said an official source. As such, the current FDI rules provide for a relaxed policy on local sourcing for entities having “cutting-edge technology”. (Such entities get a waiver from the mandatory 30% local sourcing rule for the initial three years and a “relaxed sourcing regime for another five years” if the FDI level is above 51%.)
Asked if the government intends to offer the special incentives sought by Apple, the official said: “Our policies are not specific to any company. Whenever they are changed, we will ensure all those who meet the specified criteria get the sops.”