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How did 'Make in India' fare in 2015? - Part 1

Posted: 21 Dec 2015     Print Version  Bookmark and Share

Keywords:Make in India  smartphone  electronics industry  manufacturing hub 

Foxconn returns

Foxconn Technology Group, the world's biggest electronics contract manufacturing company, signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the Maharashtra government to build a manufacturing facility with an investment of $5 billion over the next five years, a report from The Indian Express said.

The deal with the Taiwan-based company—which makes devices for Apple, Blackberry, Motorola, Amazon, Cisco and Xiaomi—is one of the largest foreign direct investment projects in the country in recent years and is the biggest in pure play manufacturing since Modi took office last year.

Foxconn chair Terry Gou said that the facility would focus on manufacturing and research and development, adding that he saw India as a manufacturing and export base in their long-term plans. This seemingly fits Modi's Make in India initiative, which aims to attract foreign investors to beef up the country's manufacturing sector.

Xiaomi, Foxconn make smartphones

China's Xiaomi has partnered with Foxconn to make smartphones in Andhra Pradesh, the Hindustan Times reported.

The deal came after Taiwan's Foxconn revealed its $5-billion investment for a new facility in Maharashtra, which many consider as the biggest feat so far of the Make in India campaign by Modi.

Xiaomi, however, did not disclose investment details. It also did not specify the capacity or number of employees to be hired at the unit.

The Chinese company has decided to make its phones here in order to reduce production costs and speed up time to market as it tries to benefit from the country's huge consumer base. India is currently the world's third largest smartphone market, but it will soon surpass the United States to become the second largest by 2017, according to research firm Strategy Analytics.

Foxconn has started manufacturing Xiaomi's first made-in-India phone, Redmi 2 Prime, at their Sri City factory. Hugo Barra, Xiaomi global vice president, launched the Redmi 2 upgrade together with Chandrababu Naidu, chief minister of Andhra Pradesh.

Barra said that the Make in India initiative by the government has helped the company to cut costs, allowing them to operate here with little or zero inventory. He also hopes that one day all Xiaomi phones sold in the country will be made here.

- Stephen Padilla

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