World’s largest electronics contract manufacturing company in the electronics sector, Foxconn, signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with Maharashtra government on Saturday to set up a manufacturing facility with an investment of $5 billion over next five years.
The state government has assured the Taiwan-based company to allot the land between Mumbai and Pune -- and authorities are likely to zero in on Talegaon. Chief minister Devendra Fadnavis said officials from Foxconn have already been shown land parcels and will be taking a call on the exact location soon.
The facility, which will be spread across 1,500 acres of land, will focus on manufacturing and research and development, announced Foxconn chairperson Terry Gou.
The announcement was made by Gou and CM Devendra Fadnavis after the signing of the MoU.
Fadnavis said the government was committed to allot company the land at the desired location. He added at least 50,000 jobs are likely to generate from the facility of the Foxconn.
“We have chosen Maharashtra for being a financial centre, availability of quality manforce and software-hardware integration facilities,” said Gou.
The MoU was the result of continuous dialogues between the company and the state government over last two months after the visit of a Fadnavis–led delegation to the facility of the company in China, officials from the chief minister's office claimed.
“This would take us ahead on the path of making our dream of Make In India and Make In Maharashtra true. As per statistcs our electronic import will surpass crude import by 2030 and the MoU signed today as very important on this background,” Fadnavis twitted later.
Gou said a team of 70 people had been working for the last two months on the deal, which was "finalised at 3 this (Saturday) morning".
The company manufactures devices for Apple, Blackberry, Xiaomi and Amazon besides other leading mobile device and gadget companies in the world. It employs about 1.3 million people during peak production times, making it one of the largest private employers in the world. But it has had to improve labour conditions following a series of suicides in 2010-2011, mostly at its Shenzhen manufacturing operation.
On Tuesday, Gou had said in Delhi that his company was looking at setting up manufacturing units in various states of India and possible partnerships in the world’s fastest growing smartphone market.
This has been the second MoU signed by the state in last two weeks, after the MoU signed with the General Motors for the investment of Rs 6400 crore for the expansion of its manufacturing unit in Pune.
This is the first specific investment announcement by Foxconn, the manufacturer of iconic Apple i-Phones, after it left the country following the closure of the Nokia plant in Tamil Nadu on tax woes earlier this year.
Last month, the company had announced to pump in $20 billion in the solar sector, along with Japan's SoftBank and Bharti Enterprises.
Over the past week, there have been announcements involving Foxconn of a joint venture with the Adani group and possible tie-ups with other companies like e-commerce player Snapdeal, mobile phone-maker Micromax and refurbished goods e-tailer Greendust.
Gou said Foxconn will be looking at local partners for the investment in Maharashtra and clarified that the MoU was different than the joint venture the company has signed with the Adani Group. He met officials from Tata Sons, TCS, Bharat Forge, Shapoorji Pallonji and also visited the IIT-Bombay, which he admired as one of the best technology schools in the world, during his Mumbai visit.
Foxconn also entered a partnership with filmmaker Subhash Ghai-promoted Whistling Woods International by making a donation for a media lab at the film, fashion and media institute located in suburban Mumbai.
(With agency inputs)