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Apple iPhone assembly partner Foxconn is working with Vedanta to produce semiconductors, a move that could help ease the global chip shortage by boosting production in India.
In a deal announced on Monday, the Taiwanese Foxconn said it has signed a memorandum of understanding with Vedanta, an oil-to-metals group, to produce semiconductors. The initiative will create a joint venture company, which would be a "significant boost to domestic manufacturing of electronics in India."
As part of the agreement, Foxconn will invest $118.7 million into the company, reports Reuters, and would hold 40% of the shares, while Vedanta becomes the majority shareholder.
The proposal stands to "support Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi's vision to create an ecosystem for semiconductor manufacturing in India," Foxconn's statement adds.
While Foxconn is a major partner of Apple, handling iPhone assembly among other tasks, it probably won't have much of an impact on the Apple supply chain. Foxconn has expressed an interest in building electric vehicle plants in the U.S., Thailand, and Europe, as it tries to offset slowing smartphone industry growth.
Apple and Foxconn do work together in India, with the latter assembling iPhones for the local market. However, unsanitary conditions at one facility prompted a protest in late 2021 and for Apple to put the plant "on probation," forcing an improvement in working conditions at the plant.
This hasn't stopped Apple from pressing onwards in India, advising in November it was planning to expand and trial new manufacturing processes in the country.