Apple has long been working with the Indian government to set up retail locations in the country, a task that’s rather challenging due to stringent regulation in the country. Now, The Economic Times reports that one concession Apple is fighting for in India is related labeling laws so it doesn’t have to print product info on devices.
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Currently, Indian law requires that certain product details be printed on the device itself, but Apple has asked that it be allowed to print the information on the iPhone’s packaging or somewhere in iOS.
Apple wants the government to relax labelling rules so that it doesn’t have to print product-related information directly onto devices to avoid cluttering up their minimalist design. That’s one of the concessions Apple has sought after expressing its intention to start manufacturing in India, an official said.
Apple’s request was initially made to the Department of Industrial Policy and Promotion, but has now been forwarded to the Department of Revenue and Department of Electronics and Information Technology.
Lax labeling laws are one of several incentives Apple has sought in India as it plans to open manufacturing facilities in the country. Apple has also sought tax incentives for manufacturing in the country, which are currently being reviewed by the country’s finance ministry.
Apple’s fight to open retail stores in India has been a long one. Indian law requires that a company with retail locations manufacture a portion of the goods in the country, and while it was initially thought that Apple might be able to circumvent that requirement, the company is now believed to be working with Foxconn on establishing manufacturing in the country.
The finance ministry had rejected an earlier proposal by Apple to set up wholly owned outlets in the country that sought exemption from the compulsory 30% local sourcing norm. The company had sought the exemption on the grounds that it was bringing “state-of-the-art” and “cutting-edge technology,” making it difficult to meet the sourcing condition.
Apple and Tim Cook have touted India as the next big market for the iPhone for several years now. A retail presence in the country would allow for more timely device releases, lower prices, and more power in helping expand cellular service.