The Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) released recommendations on promoting Networking and Telecom Equipment (NATE) Manufacturing in India on September 22. Under it, the authority suggests that there should be a concurrent production-linked incentive (PLI) scheme for NATE manufacturers “focussing on components and subassembly manufacturing to facilitate collaborated manufacturing activities.” For availing benefits under PLI schemes, the Department of Telecommunications (DoT) should prescribe that a minimum of 50% of the components used in the manufacturing of the specific end products must be manufactured in India. It suggests that higher incentives should be available to those making a higher-value addition to the Indian market: “The applicable thresholds relating to turnover and committed investment [to be made by a] by a PLI-beneficiary should apply differentially in accordance with the type of NATE products to make the Scheme more inclusive.” Also Read: How Is Indian Government Preventing Telcos From Purchasing Equipment From Chinese Vendors? Other key recommendations made by TRAI: Giving preferential market access to Indian products: To convince telcos to switch to domestic products, TRAI suggests that their applicable gross revenue (Ap-GR) should be reduced by an amount “equivalent to the aggregate certified value of indigenous Networking & Telecom Equipment (NATE) deployed in respective telecom networks during a financial year.” The reason behind reducing Ap-GR, based on what we understand, could be to reduce the license fee and the universal service obligation (USO) levy that they have to pay (these are 8% of the aggregate gross revenue and 5% of the…
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