HMD Global to make smartphone components in India soon
HMD Global soon plans to manufacture its components in India to avoid import duties and ride along the smartphone wave in the country. The Finnish company, which has license to use the Nokia brand, is in talks with Foxconn to setup surface-mount technology lines and other component manufacturing.
Nokia brand licensee HMD Global is in talks with Foxconn to start manufacturing its smartphone components in India. Foxconn will help in manufacturing smartphone components and printed circuit boards (PCBs) printed using surface-mount technology (SMT). Vice President and Country Head of HMD Global Ajey Mehta, who spoke to the Indo-Asian News Service (IANS) confirmed the development.
Until this year, we imported all our components and assembled them here. Now we will be manufacturing some of the components in India as well... next year more, and the year after that even more. We are following the phased manufacturing programme. In line with this, we have started having conversations with our partner Foxconn to manufacture our own components in the country. It will happen over a period of time. We may be a little behind, but it will eventually happen and the components that attract import duty will be manufactured here."
This comes in the wake of the Indian Government announcing increased import duties up to 20% on electronic components such as PCBs, connectors, and camera modules. The increased import duties is to encourage companies to look towards local manufacturing with an aim to lower costs, create more jobs, and reduce reliance on imported goods.
HMD Global has managed to sell more than 70 million handsets globally and has expanded its business in the Indian market by more than five times. The manufacturer has been trying to dish out new additions to its smartphone lineup and has announced new phones at MWC 2018 including the Nokia 8 Sirocco, Nokia 7 Plus, and the Nokia 6 (2018). HMD Global is also one of the major smartphone manufacturers to join Google's Android One program.
Mehta exuded confidence about the flagship Nokia 8 Sirocco and other Nokia phones and believes that they will do well in the Indian market. He was optimistic about feature phones as well. He said,
We put our best foot forward with Nokia 8 Sirocco. It is made out of steel, is 95 percent glass and is a performance-packed device in a compact design. We are confident about it... The end game is to be a full-range player. Feature phones are also a big opportunity. We will continue to invest in feature phones and refresh some of them over a period of time."
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