Samsung opens Indian factory that can make 120 million smartphones a year

Samsung will open a new smartphone factory near New Delhi on Monday. The factory, an extension of an existing production facility, should be able to make 120 million smartphones per year.

Bloomberg writes that the factory will produce various types of devices, from low-end models under a hundred dollars to the Galaxy S9 smartphones. Local sources report that the production capacity of the Samsung plant has so far been about 67 million units per year, almost doubling capacity through the expansion. The factory will be opened on Monday by Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi and South Korean President Moon Jae-in.

The financial news agency cites figures that there are about 425 million smartphone users out of India’s 1.3 billion inhabitants. Samsung would like to meet the growing demand for devices with the new factory. In India, for example, there would be mainly interest in smartphones under $250 and less in more expensive copies.

Chinese manufacturer Xiaomi, which announced in April it plans to open three factories in India, took over Samsung’s top spot in smartphone sales in the country this year, according to Bloomberg.

The Indian government has been keen to bring smartphone production to India for years as part of its ambitious Make in India program. However, in October last year, Reuters reported that many manufacturers are switching to assembling the phones only in the country, based on imported parts, because of the tax on imported phones. The lack of trained personnel would be an obstacle for manufacturers, the press service wrote at the time.

In 2015, Business Korea reported that Samsung makes its devices in Vietnam, China, India, Brazil, Indonesia and South Korea and wanted to reduce its production in China due to rising labor costs in that country. At the time, Samsung could make up to 150 million smartphones in China and 240 million in Vietnam. It is not known what major shifts in production have occurred since then.