“India’s finance ministry has rejected a government panel recommendation to exempt Apple Inc. from local sourcing requirements, two government officials said, a decision that could effectively block the tech giant’s plan to open its own retail stores in the country,” Rajesh Roy and Newley Purnell report for The Wall Street Journal. “‘We are sticking to the old policy,’ said one of the officials, who didn’t want to be identified. ‘We want local sourcing for job creation. You can’t have a situation where people view India only as a market. Let them start doing some manufacturing here.'”
“India requires single-brand retailers that are more than 51% foreign owned to buy at least 30% of their manufacturing materials from Indian vendors, preferably from small and medium-size enterprises, but there are not many high-end phone part makers in India to buy from to meet the requirement,” Roy and Purnell report. “However, the government is allowed to waive the requirement if the retailers are bringing ‘state-of-the-art’ and ‘cutting-edge’ technologies to India which aren’t available locally.”
“To assess whether a company qualifies for such an exemption, New Delhi set up a panel of bureaucrats to scrutinize proposals,” Roy and Purnell report. “Last month, the panel recommended waiving the local sourcing rule for Apple, but the Foreign Investment Promotion Board — a panel of bureaucrats that gives the final go-ahead to foreign – investment proposals — as well as Finance Minister Arun Jaitley have disagreed, the officials said.”
Read more in the full article here.
MacDailyNews Take: Protectionism: Harming the people it’s meant to help.
The “Make in India” program is supposed to focus on creating skilled jobs and minimizing environmental impact. Blocking Apple from selling Apple Certified Refurbished iPhones and forcing the company to set up factories full of entry-level assembly jobs in order to open brand new retail stores accomplishes neither objective.
Indians can’t have nice, clean stores or real iPhones are great prices (Apple Certified Refurbished iPhones are better than new fragmandroid phones) because your government is “protecting” you against such things in favor of importing pollution and crap, menial, unskilled, low-paying jobs. So, don your face masks like the Chinese to ward off the smog (not that iPhone assembly is particularly polluting, but the requirement forcing 30% of manufacturing into the country will lead to pollution from other industries) and have fun with your insecure, never-to-be-updated fake iPhones!
Or, some portion of the 1.3 billion Indian citizens could demand that the handful of government dullards blocking Apple reconsider their trade ideas.
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