Apple has joined other U.S. businesses in protesting India’s sudden introduction of tech import restrictions last month. The firms say the move will damage New Delhi’s ambitions to become a global manufacturing hub as well as harming consumers (via Bloomberg).
Eight American trade groups this week sent a letter to U.S. officials, asking the government to urge India to reconsider the new policy. which will require new licensing requirements for technology imports, starting November 1. The new policy covers laptops, tablets, servers, and data center components.
While India hasn’t explained the reasons why it is changing its rules, the move is believed to be intended to boost local manufacturing, as part of Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s “Made in India” campaign to encourage domestic manufacturing in the tech sector.
The trade groups said the move “could significantly disrupt trade, hamper efforts to more closely integrate India into global supply chains, and harm businesses and consumers in both countries,” according to a joint memo seen by Bloomberg.
While the policy was originally scheduled to go into effect earlier this month, authorities granted affected companies a three-month grace period for them to obtain the required licensing.
Several U.S. industry groups including the Information Technology Industry Council, the National Association of Manufacturers, and the Semiconductor Industry Association have objected to the upcoming licensing rules. The companies say the new rules could impact the shipment of American-made computers and electronics into India, inhibit the free flow of goods, and complicate business operations for all countries involved.