No ban on imports of laptops, computers in India till October 31

Microsoft on Thursday announced the Surface Laptop Go will be available in India from January 22 via commercial authorised resellers, authorised retail and online partners at a starting price of Rs 63,499.
Representational image: IANS

New Delhi:The government on Friday deferred the implementation of the import restriction order on laptops and computers (including tablet computers) by about three months till October 31, a move that gives more time to electronic companies to import these devices without a licence.

Now, these companies would need to take a licence from the government to import these devices from November 1.

On August 3, the government put the import of these devices under a licence regime with immediate effect. Subsequently, industry raised issues with the government on the notification.

The Directorate General of Foreign Trade (DGFT), in an order issued late on Friday, said the notification dated August 3 (Thursday) shall be effective from November 1.

"Import consignments can be cleared till October 31, 2023 without a licence for restricted imports. For clearance of import consignments with effect from November 1, 2023, a valid licence for restricted imports is required," it said.

It added that a "liberal transitional arrangement is provided for import of laptops, tablets, all-in-one personal computers, ultra-small form factor computers and servers ... till October 31, 2023".

The move will offer a breather to the companies that have been on tenterhooks following Thursday's order.

The restrictions were imposed for security reasons and the need to promote domestic manufacturing. The move will also curtail in-bound shipments of these goods from countries like China and Korea.

The import curbs will allow the Centre to keep a close watch on the locations from where the products are coming, officials said.

The decision will also spur domestic manufacturing at a time when India has identified electronics manufacturing as a key priority area for its future growth ambitions and is hoping to attract investments from global biggies looking to diversify their operations outside China.

Under the PLI 2.0 (production-linked incentive scheme) IT hardware scheme, 44 companies have already been registered and two companies have filed their applications on the scheme portal by July 31. The companies can submit applications till August 30.

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