Mumbai: Foxconn signed an agreement with the Maharashtra government on Saturday to invest $5 billion in the state over the next five years, the largest investment by a foreign company in the western province.

The agreement was signed by the state’s industry secretary Apurva Chandra and Foxconn’s chief financial officer David Huang. Maharashtra’s chief minister Devendra Fadnavis and Foxconn’s chairman Terry Gou were present on the occasion. Foxconn manufactures gadgets for world’s leading electronic brands, including Apple, Huawei, Xiaomi, BlackBerry and Motorola.

This is second major coup for Maharashtra in the past fortnight. On 30 July, General Motors announced an investment of 6,400 crore in the state.

Speaking with reporters later, Fadnavis said, “This investment will generate 50,000 direct jobs and the (Foxconn) plant is most likely to come up at Talegaon in Pune district along the Pune-Mumbai expressway on 1,500 acres of land that we have in possession."

Fadnavis referred to his visit to Foxconn’s facility in China recently and the fact that the company’s investment in India will provide a boost to the Indian government’s Make in India campaign.

“Various studies show that if we don’t start manufacturing electronic items in India by 2030, our electronic items import bill will surpass our crude import bill," Fadnavis added.

Speaking on the occasion, Gou said, “Since Fadnavis’s China visit, I (have) met him at least seven times and within two months we managed to seal the deal. This shows the strong commitment and implementation skills of Maharashtra’s leadership and that’s why we decided to invest here."

Gou also mentioned Mumbai’s status as India’s commercial capital, the fact that Maharashtra is already industrialized and home to several MNCs, and the availability of skilled and trained manpower in the state as other reasons that influenced Foxconn’s decision.

On Wednesday, addressing a press conference in New Delhi, Gou Said his company was bringing its entire supply chain to India and not looking at just assembling in the country. He said Foxconn was looking at 10-12 manufacturing units in India.

“We are looking for tie-up with various Indian as well as foreign companies for creating entire supply chain for products which we will be manufacturing in our Maharashtra facility," he said on Saturday.

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