The centre has taken a big step to support mobile phone production in India. Import duties on certain components used in making phones have been lowered from 15 per cent to 10 per cent. Additionally, the import duty on crucial materials needed to manufacture these components has been completely removed.
Components Getting Cheaper
This reduction applies to various parts like battery covers, main lenses, back covers, and mechanical items such as screws and SIM sockets. Metal-made mechanical items for cellular mobile phones, such as battery covers, front covers, GSM antennas, sealing gaskets, and more, also see a reduced duty.
Expanded List of Components
The list includes conductive cloth, LCD conductive foam, BT foam, heat dissipation stickers, protective films, and various items used to make cell phones.
Impact on the Mobile Phone Sector
The goal is to boost India's mobile phone manufacturing sector and make it more competitive globally. India has been actively attracting major companies like Apple, Xiaomi, Samsung Electronics, and Vivo to expand their assembly operations in the country.
The India Cellular and Electronics Association (ICEA) believes this duty reduction will strengthen India's position in mobile phone manufacturing, making it more competitive in the global market.
"Electronics has improved from the 9th position a few years ago to India's 5th largest export in 2024. Mobiles constitute over 52 per cent of electronics exports thanks to the Production-Linked Incentive Scheme. This is the first industry to leapfrog from import substitution to export-led growth within the last 8 years," Pankaj Mohindroo, Chairman, the Indian Cellular and Electronics Association (ICEA) said in a statement.
Mobile Manufacturing Growth in India
As global mobile companies set up units in India, the country has seen a significant increase in mobile phone exports. In the fiscal year ending March 2023, exports reached $11.1 billion (Approx. Rs. 92,174 crore), doubling year-on-year. Projections indicate that exports could rise to $15 billion (Rs. 1,24,560 crore) in the current fiscal year.
Despite this growth, concerns were raised about high duties on mobile phone parts compared to other manufacturing nations like China, Vietnam, Mexico, and Thailand.