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Explained: How India Has Clamped Down On Chinese Products, Investment


Investment proposal by China’s BYD faced scrutiny from Delhi

New Delhi:

The Centre said on Friday it would defer the imposition of a licensing requirement for imports of laptops, tablets, and personal computers by three months – partially reversing the surprise decision it announced a day earlier.

While the Centre has not said the new requirement is aimed at China, more than half of its roughly $10 billion in annual imports of personal computers and tablets are Chinese-made.

Relations between the countries have deteriorated since the mid-2020 when Chinese and Indian troops clashed on the Himalayan frontier and 24 people were killed.

Several government officials, who asked not to be named, said the licensing measure aimed to address a trade imbalance with China.

Here are some other Chinese trade and investment ventures affected by Indian measures since 2020:

INVESTMENT PLAN BY BYD

China’s BYD told its India joint-venture partner last month it would shelve plans for a new $1-billion investment to build electric cars after its investment proposal faced scrutiny from Delhi.

GREAT WALL MOTOR INVESTMENT PLAN

Great Wall Motor shelved plans last year to invest $1 billion in India and laid off all employees at its operations there after failing to obtain regulatory approvals.

XIAOMI ASSET FREEZE

The federal financial crime agency has frozen $670 million of Xiaomi’s bank assets since last year, posing a significant challenge to the smartphone maker. The agency alleges that Xiaomi made illegal remittances to foreign entities in the name of royalties. The company denies wrongdoing.

MOBILE APPS BAN

Citing data and privacy issues, India has banned about 300 Chinese mobile apps, including popular ones such as the battle-royale format game from Krafton Inc, a South Korean company backed by China’s Tencent.

NEW INVESTMENT VETTING RULES

In 2020, India stepped up scrutiny of investments from companies based in neighbouring countries by adding an extra layer of vetting and security clearances, in what was widely seen as a move to stave off takeovers and investments by Chinese firms. 

It has led to billions of dollars in proposed investment getting stuck in the approval process over the last three years.

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