The Economic Times reports that Apple CEO Tim Cook is to meet Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi later this month.

An Apple spokesperson confirmed that a meeting between its CEO Cook and PM Modi will take place. The Apple spokesperson, however, declined to comment on the topic of discussion.

It’s likely that Cook will want to discuss the possibility of official Apple Stores in the country. India does not permit manufacturer-owned stores unless a certain proportion of components are sourced within the country, forcing Apple to rely on third-party resellers … 

Apple is working to expand its network of mobile-focused resellers in India to 500 stores, also adding a fifth distributor in the country back in June.

Prime Minister Modi will in turn be pushing for Apple to make R&D and manufacturing investment in the country. Foxconn plans a $5B investment in factories in India, though it is not yet known whether these will be used to assemble iPhones.

While starting from a much smaller sales base than China, Cook said in the July earnings call that iPhone sales in India had increased by 93% in Q3, against 87% for China. Apple is expected to make the iPhone 6s/Plus available in India much earlier than was the case for previous models.

India sales may start as early as the second to third week of October, the trade has said. The Apple Watch is scheduled to be available in India by the end of this month.

Cook is no stranger to meetings with heads of state, having previously met with the Prime Ministers of both Israel and United Arab Emirates as well as President Obama.


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Ben Lovejoy

Ben Lovejoy is a British technology writer and EU Editor for 9to5Mac. He’s known for his op-eds and diary pieces, exploring his experience of Apple products over time, for a more rounded review. He also writes fiction, with two technothriller novels, a couple of SF shorts and a rom-com!

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