After repeated delays, Apple may finally get the chance to open company-run retail stores in India as the cabinet of Prime Minister Narendra Modi has reportedly approved a three-year extension on local-sourcing rules that require foreign companies operating their own retail stores to manufacture at least thirty percent of goods in the country.
Thankfully, Bloomberg states the Indian government has finally decided to help Western companies like Apple bypass local sourcing requirements for at least three years.
“Modi’s push to clarify those procedures will pave the way for Apple to open a retail store, according to the people familiar with the matter,” Bloomberg said. The exemption should benefit other companies, like Chinese smartphone makers Leshi and Xiaomi which have previously applied for exemptions of their own.
The Indian government imposed strict sourcing norms on foreign companies for fear of multinational corporations destroying local industries.
Apple’s products are assembled in China, not India, so the regulation posed a significant obstacle to opening Apple Stores in the populous country, forcing the Cupertino company to deliver its products into the hands of Indian customers through a network of authorized third-party resellers and electronics chains.
Following pressure from the likes of Apple, Modi’s cabinet promised to offer exemptions to companies with “cutting edge” and “state-of-the-art” technology.