After expanding its footprint in manufacturing smartphones and other tech devices, India is looking to become the electronics repair capital of the world, taking the crown from China and Malaysia, which currently dominate the industry.
On Wednesday, the country’s Ministry of Information and Technology launched a pilot project called Electronics Repair Services Outsourcing (ERSO) to test electronics repair outsourcing, initially for a three-month pilot in Bengaluru. Flex, Lenovo, CTDI, R-Logic and Aforeserve will participate in the program.
New Delhi aims to generate revenue of up to $20 billion and create millions of jobs over the next five years through outsourced repair services carried out by the participating companies.
The pilot project is in line with Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s Mission LiFE (Lifestyle for Environment), which was announced in October last year to work on environmental sustainability, said Ali Akhtar Jafri, director general of IT and electronics manufacturer industry body MAIT.
“It will enable the extension of device life globally by providing cheap and reliable repair of ICT [Information and Communications Technology] products for the globe,” he said.
Indian industry players are already in talks with companies with operations in Singapore, Brazil, Vietnam, Indonesia, Hong Kong, Mexico, Thailand and the U.S. to take on their repair needs.
Currently, China and Malaysia dominate the market for repair outsourcing. Nevertheless, India has started to attract firms such as Apple and Samsung to build hardware in the country both for India’s domestic market and for export. Taking on repair services would be a logical next step.
The Indian government began a pilot program last year to decrease the time it takes to test and approve electronic devices for safety. That too will help boost the country’s profile for repairs, potentially attracting more manufacturers over time.