24 September, 2023

PC, laptop import restrictions to enable ease of doing business: ICEA

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The India Cellular and Electronics Association (ICEA) on Thursday said it is confident that valid licenses will be provided to trusted industry partners to enable ease of doing business, as the government announced restrictions on import of laptops, personal computers and other electronics items.

A notification issued by the Directorate General of Foreign Trade (DGFT) under the Commerce Ministry on Thursday notified restrictions on import of laptops, tablets, personal computers and servers.

Although import of these items will be allowed against a licence, certain use cases have been exempted from the restrictions.

The import of these electronic goods is allowed when they are an ‘essential’ part of a capital good, according to the notification.

“This policy announcement seems to be based on the premise of providing secure digital access to the burgeoning number of digital citizens in the country,” Pankaj Mohindroo, Chairman, ICEA, said in a statement.

“We are confident that valid licenses will be provided to trusted industry partners which will enable Ease of Doing Business (EoDB) and unrestricted access to trusted brands for digital consumers,” he added.

In the notification, around 20 of these items have been exempted from an import licence per consignment for purposes like research and development, testing, benchmarking and evaluation, repair and re-export and for product development.

Imports under baggage rules also don’t fall under these restrictions, the DGFT notification said.

According to Prabhu Ram, Head-Industry Intelligence Group, CMR, the new policy announcement is a step in the right direction, as it seeks to restrict certain electronics imports and enforce licenses for restricted items, and thereby fostering Make in India.

“The PLI Scheme 2.0 for IT Hardware is expected to enhance the hardware manufacturing ecosystem,” he told IANS.

The new policy change came as the government earlier this week extended the window for receiving applications under the production-linked incentive (PLI) scheme 2.0 for IT Hardware till August 30.

The PLI Scheme 2.0 for IT Hardware was notified on May 29 with a budgetary outlay of Rs 17,000 crore.

Semiconductor design, IC manufacturing, and packaging are also included as incentivised components of the PLI Scheme 2.0 for IT Hardware.

With an anticipated incremental investment of Rs 2,430 crore, the scheme aims to generate an incremental production amounting to Rs 3,35,000 crore.

Moreover, the PLI 2.0 is expected to create 75,000 direct jobs along with over 2 lakh indirect jobs, significantly increasing employment opportunities in the sector.

The scheme covers laptops, tablets, all-in-one PCs, servers and ultra small form factor devices.


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