Apple may not have cleared every hurdle it needs to in order to open its first retail stores in India, says a report from earlier on Tuesday. However, the company has not been completely shut out.
India’s Foreign Investment Promotion Board has ruled that Apple must follow rules requiring it to procure at least 30 percent of parts locally if it wants to sell through a single-brand store, sources informed Bloomberg. Apple was seemingly set to be granted an exemption, but the FIPB decided that it will not be approved.
The company still has a chance, as the FIPB’s ruling must still be ratified by Finance Minister Arun Jaitley.
Apple CEO Tim Cook met with Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Saturday, and retail stores were reportedly a topic of discussion. Reports indicate the Cupertino firm is already on the lookout for prime real estate in the country, and plans to launch as many as three new stores there within the next 18 months.
The company should eventually be able to meet the local sourcing requirements, as main assembly partner Foxconn is looking at building a manufacturing plant in India, however it isn’t know when that plant would be ready for production.