India's first lithium-ion cells manufacturing plant for the mobile industry will be set up in the country's southern state of Andhra Pradesh by the Munoth Industries Limited using Chinese technology.
Speaking to Xinhua on Thursday, Jaswant Munoth, director of the Munoth Industries Limited, said that his company will get the technology of manufacturing lithium-ion cells from a Chinese company "BPI" based in Shenzhen city which has mastered this technology over the years.
"We have already got the technology from them, and the Chinese company also helped us in designing the whole plant, identifying the machines and required chemicals, etc. We are going to make both pouch batteries and cylindrical batteries. Initially we will import Lithium from China, but we are also in touch with some other trading partners, including Japanese, to get Lithium in the future," said Jaswant Munoth.
He further said that the company would invest 799 crore Indian Rupees (around 120 million U.S. dollars) in setting up the lithium-ion plant, and the first phase would be completed by March next year.
The plant will generate employment opportunities for around 1,700 people, he added.
Munoth also said, "We are looking at achieving a market share of approximately six percent of the total number of batteries consumed in the mobile phone industry in India during the first phase of the production."
The plant would be set up under Prime Minister Narendra Modi's ambitious "Make In India" and "Digital India" initiatives.
According to president of the Indian Cellular Association (ICA) Pankaj Mohindroo, the current consumption of batteries in India is approximately 400 to 450 million per annum for mobile phones, including replacement and about 100 million per annum for power-banks used for charging mobile phone sets.
Munoth Industries Managing Director Vikas Munoth said that their decision to set up the country's first ever lithium-ion cell manufacturing plant for mobile handsets is truly a "revolutionary step" aimed at supporting the Indian government's goal to step up value addition in the mobile handset sector.
"We are fully confident that India will emerge to be a strong nation in terms of establishment of a robust components/core-components eco-system in the coming years," he added.
Ajay Prakash Sawhney, a top ranking official at the country's Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology, said that with this lithium-ion project coming up, India is preparing itself to become more competitive with enhanced value addition and employment generation.
"Lithium-Ion cell is a core component for mobile phone industry. As of now, Lithium-ion cells are imported and battery packs are assembled in India using the imported cells and with this project of Munoth Industries, we will begin our journey to become a pioneer in this space," added Swahney.