Cheng Uei Precision Industry Co (正崴精密), a Taiwan-based cable and connector maker, plans to start mass production for Apple Inc later this year from its new plant in India, a person familiar with the matter said, the latest sign of the US company’s increasing presence in the South Asian country.
Apple’s major assembly partners, Taiwan’s Hon Hai Precision Industry Co (鴻海精密) — known internationally as Foxconn Technology Group (富士康科技集團) — Pegatron Corp (和碩) and Wistron Corp (緯創), have all set up either a subsidiary or an iPhone assembly plant in India.
The chairman of Cheng Uei, also known as Foxlink, is Gou Tai-chiang (郭台強), the brother of Hon Hai founder Terry Gou (郭台銘).
India is trying to attract manufacturing for Apple, Samsung Electronics Co and other major smartphone brands with an incentive program, as political tensions between the US and China escalate.
The global COVID-19 pandemic has increased also pressure on companies to review their supply chains.
Cheng Uei said in a statement on Friday that a company engineer was caught on internal video surveillance this month damaging automation equipment at the new plant near Chennai, India.
The suspect is a Chinese national, and the incident was reported to local police and the Chinese authorities, it said.
Separately, companies from Taiwan and India on Thursday signed four memorandums of understanding (MOUs) for further industrial cooperation in areas ranging from green technology to electronics.
During the Taiwan-India Industrial Collaboration Summit, which was held online this year due to COVID-19, representatives from both nations vowed to work more closely amid the pandemic and the US-China trade dispute, which have accelerated restructuring of the global supply chain.
It is an opportune moment for the two nations to cooperate, as India is eager to replace China as the next “world’s factory” after seeing many businesses relocate from China to India, Southeast Asian countries and US-Mexico border areas, officials said.
The two nations could cooperate in the electronics sector, one of Taiwan’s strongest areas, Deputy Minister of Economic Affairs Chen Chern-chyi (陳正祺) said, adding that he hopes India will be able to offer incentives such as bureaucratic reduction.
The two nations have made good progress in bilateral relations under Taiwan’s New Southbound Policy, and Taiwanese businesses have instigated 108 investment projects in India since 2016, worth more than US$800 million in total, Chen said.
Companies involved in the MOUs include Solid State System Co (鑫創) and Dyfenco International Co (岱暉) from Taiwan, as well as Smile Electronics and SB Packagings from India.
Cohosted by the Chinese National Federation of Industries and Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce & Industry, the summit has been held annually since 2017.
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