Apple, the maker of popular iPad and iPhone devices, will have to submit a fresh application for opening single brand retail stores in the country, as certain gaps have been found in the initial proposal.
The Department of Industrial Policy and Promotion (DIPP) has explained the gaps to the company and wants them to submit a fresh application, seeking more information on their proposal for further processing, according to sources.
Last month, the company had filed its proposal seeking permission for single brand retailing and sell its products online. Apple had not mentioned the amount of investment and number of stores it wants to open. An e-mail query sent to Apple remained unanswered.
The Commerce and Industry Ministry could exempt the company from local sourcing norms as the US-based giant makes ‘state-of-the-art’ and ‘cutting edge’ technology products, the sources said.
The government had last year relaxed the foreign direct investment (FDI) policy for single brand retailing. The government had said that it may also relax the sourcing norms for entities undertaking single brand retailing of products having ‘state-of-the-art’ and ‘cutting edge’ technology and where local sourcing is not possible.
Single brand retailers are also allowed to take e-commerce route for such trading.
At present, 100 per cent FDI is permitted in the sector. But beyond 49 per cent, the FIPB permission is required. The company sells its products through Apple-owned retail stores in countries, including China, Germany, the US, the UK and France.
It has no wholly-owned store in India and sells its products through distributors such as Redington and Ingram Micro.