Mobile phones to become dearer as government imposes 10% duty on import of display: Industry body

There will be an impact on mobile phone prices between 1.5 and 3%, says India Cellular and Electronics Association

Mobile phone prices are expected to rise about 3% as the government has imposed 10% duty on the import of displays, industry body ICEA said on Friday.

The duty on display assembly and touch panel was proposed to be applied from October 1 under a phased manufacturing programme (PMP) announced in 2016 in consensus with the industry.

“There will be an impact on mobile phone prices between 1.5 and 3 per cent,” industry body ICEA National Chairman Pankaj Mohindroo said in a statement.

India Cellular and Electronics Association (ICEA) members include Apple, Huawei, Xiaomi, Vivo and Winstron.

The objective of the PMP was to facilitate manufacturing of components indigenously and discourage imports thereafter.

“In a rare miss, the industry could not ramp up display assembly production adequately because of COVID-19 and NGT embargo. We continue to be fully committed to domestic manufacturing of sub-assemblies and components. However, now, the focus is to take a lion’s share of global markets and not just import substitution,” Mr Mohindroo said.

Vedanta Group Chairman Anil Agarwal-promoted Volcan Investments had proposed to set up the country’s first LCD manufacturing unit in 2016 with investment of around ₹68,000 crore in the name of Twinstar Display Technologies. However, the proposal did not get the government’s approval and the project could not take off.

Mr Mohindroo said ICEA will soon come up with a report on the display ecosystem which would focus on not merely assembly but complete display fabs.

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