Apple got an invitation from Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi for setting up a manufacturing base in India, to which the company’s CEO Tim Cook responded positively, said officials. Citing huge opportunities in India, Modi said he would appreciate if the U.S. firm starts manufacturing there, officials told reporters.

Apple CEO Invited To Make Products In India By PM Modi

Apple has deep connection with India

Cook’s positive response indicates that India fits with his long-term plans. A “whole app development economy” is what Cook was particularly interested in as he believes it to be an important factor for entrepreneurship. It allows individual app developers to become part of the app universe. Citing the example of China, where they created 1.5 million jobs, Cook said people can become part of this huge industry by using app development tools. Apple’s largest manufacturer, Foxconn, has already decided to set up a manufacturing base in India.

At the meeting, Apple’s CEO mentioned that India holds a special place in the hearts of all Apple employees as Steve Jobs, when he was young, visited India for an inspiration to launch Apple.

Cook expressed keen interest to partner with the Digital India initiative and believes it to be a game changer for India. Cook said Apple has been operating in India for nearly 20 years now, adding that they are fortunate to have many passionate customers and a fast growing “developer community” as well. Investments are being made for expanding operations throughout the country, Cook said.

Potential for Apple Pay

Arun K. Singh, the Indian Ambassador to the U.S., said that during the meeting it was generally accepted that a lot of design innovation is happening in India. “As Apple expands its presence in India including a manufacturing presence there could be enhanced opportunity for app development related to the Apple platforms,” Singh said. Officials informed the media that some discussion also took place on how Apple Pay could become part of “Jan Dhan Yojana” and other such initiatives.

Modi is the first Indian PM to visit Silicon Valley after the region achieved the status of being a hub for global innovation and entrepreneurship. Apart from meeting Apple’s CEO, Modi also met Microsoft’s Satya Nadella, Qualcomm’s Paul Jacobs, Adobe’s Shantanu Narayen, Cisco’s John Chambers, Google’s Sundar Pichai and The Indus entrepreneur’s President Venkatesh Shukla.