Apple CEO Tim Cook is among the business leaders who will meet Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi during his visit to the United States later this month.
Mr. Cook’s meeting with Modi was confirmed by a spokesman for Apple, according to a report from Economic Times. The spokesperson of the tech giant declined to provide details regarding the topic of discussion between PM Modi and Mr. Cook.
On the other hand, the office of the Indian Prime Minister is reaching out with Apple about the meeting, according to three people familiar with the matter.
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PM Modi is expected to highlight India’s initiatives
The report indicated that PM Modi is probably eager to discuss his government’s initiatives including the “Make in India” and “Digital India.” He will also likely encourage Mr. Cook lead Apple toward investing in manufacturing and research &development (R&D) in India.
On the other hand, Mr. Cook will probably ask the PM regarding the approval of Apple stores in the country and raise the issue about the mandatory sourcing standards.
One of the people familiar with the planned meeting commented that Apple already expressed its intention to explore R&D activities in India. The tech giant also wants to understand the government’s regulations on foreign direct investment in retail to be able to set-up Apple stores in the country.
Apple has been forced to depend on third-party sellers in India because the government does not allow manufacturer-owned stores unless some components are sourced within the country.
Foxconn Technology, one of the suppliers of Apple is planning to invest $5 billion in India. However, it is still unknown whether the investment has something to do with the iPhone or iPad production.
Apple iPhone sales in India increased significantly
During Apple’s recent earnings call, Mr. Cook noted that the company’s sales in India increase 93% in the third quarter, higher than its sales growth of 87% in China.
Apple is expected to sell the iPhone 6S and iPhone 6S Plus as early as the second or third week of Octobers. The tech giant aims to double its sales in the country this year. The tech giant sold one million iPhones during the seven months ended April 30, similar to its sales performance last year.
The Apple Watch is expected to be available in India by the end of September.