India stands to benefit from the troubles plaguing its northern neighbour’s as tech giant Apple has kickstarted plans to shift part of its production away from China by manufacturing its latest product, the iPhone 14, in the South Asian nation.
Unveiled last month, the latest iteration of the iconic iPhone is said to include “groundbreaking new technologies and important safety capabilities,” according to the Cupertino, California-based company.
“We’re excited to be manufacturing iPhone 14 in India,” it added.
The move signals a break from its previous commitment to China, as the country battles with a ruinous zero-COVID strategy which has seen entire cities shut down for weeks, a rise in state interference in business matters, and increasingly bellicose rhetoric between its leaders and Western nations.
These issues have led many American and European companies to prioritise the diversification of their supply chains, with “on-shoring” and “near-shoring” becoming buzzwords in the production and logistics space.
Foxconn, a key Apple supplier and the manufacturer of most of its iPhones, has had an operation in the southern Indian state of Tamil Nadu since 2017, where it makes older versions of the handsets.
Analysts at investment bank JP Morgan earlier this month predicted that Apple will move around five per cent of iPhone production to India this year, rapidly increasing to 25 per cent of all iPhone production 2025.
Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi will be celebrating the move, which will be seen as a validation of his government’s launch, eight years ago of a “Made in India” campaign aimed at boosting the country’s manufacturing and exports.
In another sign that China’s star is waning for the world’s most valuable company, Foxconn also invested $1.5 billion (€1.5 billion) in Vietnam last year, and last month signed a $300 million (€300 million) agreement to expand its facility.
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