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Business News/ News / India/  PM pitches India to chip majors, assures reforms
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PM pitches India to chip majors, assures reforms

Modi said India is best positioned to become a trusted chip supplier to the world

Prime Minister Narendra Modi takes a walk-through of an exhibition during the inauguration of Semicon India 2023, a national-level event focusing on the semiconductor industry, in Gandhinagar on Friday. (PTI)Premium
Prime Minister Narendra Modi takes a walk-through of an exhibition during the inauguration of Semicon India 2023, a national-level event focusing on the semiconductor industry, in Gandhinagar on Friday. (PTI)

New Delhi: Prime Minister Narendra Modi pitched India to global semiconductor companies, highlighting its expanding talent pool, favourable tax regime, and financial incentives.

Modi urged investors to seize the opportunity to invest in India and assured them that reforms to improve the business environment will continue.

“Last year, the question people were asking at Semicon India was why they should invest in India, but in one year, the question has changed to why not invest. The winds have changed, and the perception of India has changed," he said at Semicon India 2023 on Friday.

“This is the right time for India and the world," he said. Companies assembled at the event, including AMD, Foxconn, Micron, Applied Materials, Cadence and Vedanta concurred, with AMD announcing a $400 million investment in India and Micron appreciating the government’s efforts to quickly allocate land for building its packaging and testing unit with an investment plan of $825 million.

Foxconn chairman Young Liu praised India’s determination in attracting investments. “I can feel the determination of the Indian government. I am very optimistic about the way India will be headed. PM Modi once mentioned that IT stands for India and Taiwan. Taiwan is and will be your most trusted and reliable partner," said Liu of Foxconn, one the largest Taiwanese companies that have now made India its next investment destination and has invested billions into creating mobile phone manufacturing facilities. The company is looking at other avenues, including electric vehicles and semiconductors.

Modi said India would be best positioned to attract industry at a time when the world was emerging from headwinds and uncertainties.

“[We are] emerging from a global pandemic and the Russia-Ukraine war. The world needs a trusted, reliable chip supply. What can be better than the largest democracy in the world?" Modi said.

Prabhu Raja, president, semiconductor products group at Applied Materials, said India is poised to play an important role in the global semiconductor industry.

“We firmly believe this is India’s time to shine. No company or country can overcome challenges in the sector alone. It’s time for collaborative partnerships in this sector. This new collaborative model can provide us [the opportunity] to be a catalyst in the sector," he said.

“For the first time, geopolitics, domestic policies and private sector capacity are aligned in India’s favour to become a player in semiconductor production," said Ajit Manocha, president and chief executive of SEMI, the industry body supporting semiconductor makers globally.

“Micron is committed to building a semiconductor assembly and test facility in Gujarat. We estimate that our project in Gujarat will create nearly 5,000 direct jobs and additional 15,000 jobs in the community. We are hopeful that this investment will help catalyze other investments in the sector," said Sanjay Mehrotra, CEO of Micron Technology.

The Prime Minister added that India was a trusted destination amid geopolitical tensions. “The world’s trust in India is increasing. Investors trust India because of a stable, responsible and reform-oriented government. The semiconductor industry trusts India because we have a massive talent pool, skilled engineers and power of designers," he said.

He added that exponential growth was being seen in the digital electronics manufacturing sector. “Today, our share has risen from $30 billion in 2014 and has crossed $100 billion today. In two years, electronics exports have more than doubled. From an importer, India is making the best mobile phones and exporting them as well. Before 2014, there were two units. Today, there are more than 200 mobile manufacturing units," he added.

He noted that there are people in India who may not have used a basic home appliance but are going to make use of interconnected smart devices. “The growing neo-middle class of India has become the powerhouse of Indian aspirations", Modi said.

He underlined that the chip-making industry is a market filled with opportunities and expressed confidence that those who begin early will get a first-mover advantage over others.

The Prime Minister said India understands its global responsibilities and is working on a comprehensive roadmap with friendly countries, which is why it is building a vibrant semiconductor ecosystem. Recently, the National Quantum Mission was approved. Furthermore, the National Research Foundation Bill is also going to be introduced in Parliament.

He underlined that the policy reforms in India will have a positive impact on the construction of the semiconductor ecosystem. He also highlighted, among others, that India had many tax exemptions for the new manufacturing industry, lowest corporate tax rate, and special incentives for the semiconductor industry.

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Gulveen Aulakh
Gulveen Aulakh is Senior Assistant Editor at Mint, serving dual roles covering the disinvestment landscape out of New Delhi, and the telecom & IT sectors as part of the corporate bureau. She had been tracking several government ministries for the last ten years in her previous stint at The Economic Times. An IIM Calcutta alumnus, Gulveen is fluent in French, a keen learner of new languages and avid foodie.
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Updated: 29 Jul 2023, 12:29 AM IST
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