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Apple Inc. and Samsung Electronics Co. are among companies interested in increasing electronics production in India, MoS Technology Rajeev Chandrasekhar told news agency Bloomberg TV in an interview on Friday, a boon for the country’s push to challenge neighbouring China as a manufacturing hub.

India is seeking to expand its early success in smartphones to other product categories Chandrasekhar said in the interview. The Centre on Wednesday unveiled an expanded incentive scheme to attract big-ticket investments in IT hardware manufacturing, doubling the amount to $2 billion as it aims to spur domestic production of laptops and tablets.

The programme, which also covers personal computers and servers, is expected to benefit global and Indian companies such as Dell, Wistron Corp, Dixon, and Foxconn.

The scheme is key to India's ambitions to become a powerhouse in the global electronics supply chain, with the country targeting an annual output worth $300 billion by 2026. The original incentive plan was announced in February 2021 with a $1 billion outlay.

“We’ve had considerable success and tailwinds in the smartphone segment and we have increased interest from the likes of Apple and Samsung in expanding and growing here,” Chandrasekhar said. “We want to essentially replay that and add to that.”

India’s previous efforts in the space resulted in Apple and Samsung exporting billions of dollars of handsets from the country.

The new IT hardware production-linked incentive plan has been drawn up for companies such as Dell Technologies Inc., HP Inc. and Lenovo Group Ltd., Chandrasekhar said.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s government also wants to attract chip fabrication and chip packaging plants to India, he said. India is set to revive its effort to lure prospective chipmakers into the country as projects already disclosed, including billionaire Anil Agarwal’s $19 billion plan, are taking time to get off the ground, Bloomberg News reported this month.

MAIT, a key industry body that represent manufacturers such as Apple, Dell, and Samsung, welcomed the move and said it will help to meet the domestic demand for IT products as well as boost exports.

"We believe this scheme will help IT hardware sector to achieve the same level of success India had with smartphone manufacturing," Ali Akhtar Jafri, Director General at MAIT told news agency Reuters.