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Tuesday,25-January-2022

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iPhone 13 launch: Can Apple capture a larger market share in India?

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 Apple is all set to unleash its new iPhone models on September 14. With its upcoming iPhone 13 series launch, it is primed to build on its recent growth momentum in India with a potential double-digit growth for the full year.

“I believe the new generation of iPhones will come with enhanced camera upgrades, faster A15 Bionic processor, always-on display, dynamic 120Hz refresh rates, and bigger batteries, amongst others. Increased local assembly, expanded retail initiatives including online store, aggressive marketing initiatives, and positive consumer appetite including, especially iPhone loyalists, will potentially fuel Apple’s growth.

“As we run into the all-important festive quarter, Apple does need to navigate some potential headwinds ahead, including potential supply chain constraints, and associated increase in component prices,” CMR’s Head, Industry Intelligence Group, Prabhu Ram, told IANS.

Apple registered more than 140 per cent growth in India in the second quarter this year, as iPhone 11 continued to perform well with a strong aspirational brand value, according to CMR.

iPhone 11 contributed over 60 per cent of the iPhone shipments during the April-June quarter in the country. The rest of the iPhone line-up, including Apple iPhone 12, XR and SE 2020 also performed well.

“Apple is likely to capture over 2 per cent share in 2021, its highest annual share ever. Apart from this, local manufacturing will help it to further localise its operations and save on the duties that can make help to bring the cost of its products down. Additionally, refurb market is also growing and entry to enter into Apple ecosystem can now happen from sub Rs 20K price points.

“Going forward we expect Apple and are on track to record its best annual performance in India ever since,” market intelligence firm Counterpoint’s Research Director Tarun Pathak said.

Apple has already started manufacturing certain iPhone models, including the latest iPhone 12, in India. The Cupertino-based tech giant started manufacturing iPhones in India in 2017 with iPhone SE, and now manufactures some of its most advanced iPhones in India, including XR, iPhone 11, and now iPhone 12.

“Apple was never a mass product for markets like India. It’s a gradual game for them in India and they should never go after market share by thinking of affordable iPhones. That goes against the brand image. This season, however, I see positive news for the Luxe segment (above Rs 50,000) as the target segment has rather saved money and hasn’t got affected much due to the pandemic,” techARC Founder and Chief Analyst, Faisal Kawoosa, noted.

The iPhone 13 lineup may mirror the iPhone 12 family of phones, with a 5.4-inch iPhone 13 Mini, 6.1-inch iPhone 13, 6.1-inch iPhone 13 Pro, and 6.7-inch iPhone 13 Pro Max. The devices are said to be powered by Apple’s next-generation A15 chip manufactured based on TSMC’s 5nm+ process.

The entire iPhone 13 range is also expected to sport the LiDAR sensor, which first appeared in the latest generation iPad Pro in March this year followed by the iPhone 12 Pro and iPhone 12 Pro Max.

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Equities settle high after crash on Monday; Sensex up over 350 pts

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After a bloodbath in the Indian equity segment on Monday due to continued selling-off pressure by foreign institutional investors, the market on Tuesday recovered its losses, though marginally.

Sensex settled 0.6 per cent or by 366 points higher at 57,858 points, whereas Nifty is 0.8 per cent up or by 128 at 17,277 points.

Barring Nifty IT index, all the others traded in the green during the intra-day trade. Nifty bank, auto, media, PSU bank, and realty indices rose the most, NSE data showed.

On the stocks front, Maruti Suzuki India, Axis Bank, SBI, Indusind Bank, and UPL were the top five gainers, rising 7.4 per cent, 6.5 per cent, 3.9 per cent, 3.6 per cent, and 3.5 per cent, respectively. Wipro, Bajaj Finserv, Titan, Ultratech Cement, Tech Mahindra were the top five losers during the session.

“After a week-long consolidation, domestic indices took a breather supported by low-level buying. Western markets also supported staging recovery following correction in oil markets, and as uncertainties over Fed policy and geopolitical tensions eased,” said Vinod Nair, Head of Research at Geojit Financial Services.

“However, volatility is expected to linger as investors await the Fed’s final policy statement, providing clarity on the timeline of rate hikes. If the statement is as hawkish as anticipated, we cannot ignore a bounce in the market.”

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Budget 2022: Increase in custom duty on Aluminium scrap from 2.5 to 10% is key expectation

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Steel Industry

Steel Industry.

As the Indian economy pushes forward to grow at 9 per cent and above over the next few years, a key challenge for the country would be to rebalance its energy needs in favour of renewable sources by 2030 to 50 per cent as per the Paris agreement.

This is where the Aluminium sector will play a greater than ever before role. Extensive growth in electric vehicles, renewables, modern infrastructure, energy efficient consumer goods and greater dependence on strategic sectors such as aerospace and defence, will drive Aluminium consumption to grow at CAGR of 10 per cent or more. For example, Aluminium usage in EV battery is 40-50 per cent more than a normal ICE. Being 3 times lighter than steel it aids in fuel efficiency making it an efficient choice for EVs.

However, the Indian aluminium industry is struggling to revive itself over the last two years following the unprecedented Covid pandemic. The declining domestic producers market share with surging imports coupled with significant cost escalation for primary producers due to a rise in input costs of critical raw materials, escalating ocean freights & logistics costs due to container shortage, current coal crunch situation etc, is restricting the industry’s ability to support the future of the country at a time when India cannot rely on import sources alone to fuel this growth.

To give relief to the sector, there is a need for urgently looking at the duty structure. The basic custom duty on Aluminium and Aluminium scrap is not in line with other non-ferrous metals like Zink, lead, nickel and tin which is a huge disadvantage for domestic Aluminium producers. The industry expects increase in tariff rate of basic custom duty or peak custom duty rate from existing 10 per cent to 15 per cent. Currently custom duty on Primary Aluminium is 7.5 per cent, Downstream Aluminium is 7.5 per cent to 10 per cent and Aluminium scrap is only 2.5 per cent. This is the reason why despite having significant presence of primary Aluminium capacity and potential to generate sufficient domestic scrap, India’s consumption of scrap is 100 per cent import dependent. The way forward is to increase custom duty on Aluminium srap from 2.5 to 10 per cent.

Primary aluminium industry is facing severe threat from the increasing import of Aluminium scrap. The share of scrap in total imports increased from 52 per cent in FY-16 to 66 per cent in FY-21. resulting in Forex Outgo of $2 billion (Rs 15,000 crore).

What is also affecting the Indian industry is China’s renewed measures to restrict Scrap imports through National Sword Policy, which is leading to greater inflow of scrap into India. China imposed 25 per cent duty on Aluminium Scrap imports from USA, and classified Aluminium Scrap in restricted import list from July, 2019, with plan to completely ban all scrap and waste imports. Post that the share of import from the US in China’s total Aluminium scrap imports has declined from 53 per cent in 2017 to just 16 per cent in 2019. India has overtaken China as world’s largest aluminium scrap importer due to Chinese measures. As a result, entire global scrap chain is shifted to India in absence of any quality or BIS standards for scrap recycling/ usage and imports in the country. A major threat is from US scrap imports, as US is diverting large volume of scrap to India, since EU and other developed countries have stringent standards for scrap. The import from US as share of India’s total scrap imports increased from 8 per cent in FY16 to 24 per cent in FY21.

This precarious situation can be resolved by safeguarding the domestic industry against these non-essential imports in the upcoming union budget.

The industry demands increasing the basic custom duty on Chapter-76 (Aluminium & articles).

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Maruti Suzuki’s Q3FY22 net profit down 47.90%

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Automobile major Maruti Suzuki India’s Q3FY22 net profit declined by over 47 per cent on a year-on-year basis, falling to Rs 1,011.3 crore from Rs 1,941.4 crore in Q3FY21.

The automobile major cited lower sales volume along with high commodity prices and lower non-operating income on account of mark-to-market impact as factors behind the net profit decline.

Net sales for the quarter under review fell to Rs 22,187.6 crore from Rs 22,236.7 crore earned in Q3FY21.

“The company sold a total of 430,668 units during the quarter, lower than 495,897 units in the same period, previous year,” the auto major said in a statement.

“Production was constrained by a global shortage in the supply of electronic components because of which an estimated 90,000 units could not be produced.

“In the domestic market, the sales stood at 365,673 units in the quarter, against 467,369 units in Q3FY21.

“There was no lack of demand as the company had more than 240,000 pending customer orders at the end of the quarter. Though still unpredictable, the electronics supply situation is improving gradually. The company hopes to increase production in Q4, though it would not reach full capacity.”

Besides, in the quarter under review, the company clocked its highest ever exports at 64,995 units as compared to 28,528 units in Q3FY21. “This was also 66 per cent higher than the previous peak exports in any Q3.”

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