Apple has suspended the imports of the Mac and iPad into India following a major regulatory shift that now requires laptop and tablet makers to obtain a license to import devices into the country, reports Bloomberg.
This week, India announced that it would not allow companies to import tablets and all-in-one computers into the country without a permit. The move aims to boost local production of these products instead of importing them from other major production hubs like China and Vietnam.
Bloomberg reports that the sudden shift in regulation “caught the industry off-guard,” and as a result, Apple, alongside Samsung and HP, has been forced to suspend imports into the country. The companies are reportedly “engaging with New Delhi on how to most quickly obtain licenses” ahead of a busy season in India for Diwali and back-to-school shopping.
The Indian government has aggressively sought to bolster its local production capabilities over the last couple of years. Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s government has been incentivizing companies like Apple and its major suppliers, like Foxconn, to build factories and production hubs within the country.
Apple and its suppliers have already invested heavily in India, moving production of certain products to the country. India has always been an important market for Apple, and the government just recently broke into the top five iPhone markets worldwide. This week, Foxconn announced it would invest more than $600 million into India to build a phone casing component plant and semiconductor equipment manufacturing projects.