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.
The Department of Industrial Policy and Promotion (DIPP) forwarded the iPhone maker’s request to the Department of Revenue and Department of Electronics and Information Technology (DeITY) in November for consideration, said another official.
Apple’s distinctive design language is integral to product appeal and it strives to keep surfaces as free of artefacts as possible. The company wants to provide the product details that are required by law in India as part of the software of the device or on the packaging. The labelling issue will be dealt with by DeITY, the official said.
The company has also sought tax incentives that are being examined by the finance ministry. The government currently provides subsidies for investments in special economic zones in order to woo investors. Apple did not respond to queries.
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.
During his visit to the country earlier this year, Apple CEO Tim Cook had said India was its next big market. PM Narendra Modi had urged Cook to set up factories to make its products in India.