(Reuters) — India is planning to backstop its rising electronics sector by arranging to airlift elements from China, three authorities officers mentioned, because it tries to include the fallout from the coronavirus disaster in China.

India’s federal expertise ministry has requested electronics and smartphone business foyer teams to attract up a listing of elements made in China which then may be airlifted, two of the officers mentioned. China is slowly getting again to work after an prolonged shutdown, however it’s nonetheless grappling with a variety of manufacturing and logistics delays.

Electronics manufacturing, particularly the meeting of smartphones, is a brilliant spot for India’s in any other case flagging economic system. But the nation continues to be extremely depending on China for elements comparable to digicam modules and show screens.

The emergency airlift plans underscore the interconnected nature of world provide chains and the continued dependence on China for key items whilst some producers – prompted in some instances by the U.S.-China commerce conflict – transfer to construct up capability exterior of China.

Other industries are additionally exploring airfreight choices.

India will airlift electronics components from China amid coronavirus crisis

The Automotive Component Manufacturers Association of India has reached out to its members to evaluate which elements are in brief provide and might probably be air-lifted, in accordance with a supply conscious of the matter. India’s auto business depends closely on China for elements comparable to digital elements, stress sensors and gasoline injectors.

India’s embassy in China can be serving to coordinate an airlift of drug elements from China, mentioned a authorities adviser with direct information of the matter.

For the electronics and smartphone elements, the expertise ministry “is in touch with aviation carriers and air freighters and they’ve been connected with the industry,” one of many authorities sources mentioned.

The airlifting of elements from the Chinese cities of Guangzhou and Shanghai is one possibility being mentioned, the official mentioned.

The sources didn’t say when the airlifting would possibly start. The aviation ministry didn’t instantly reply a request for remark.

Lack of truck drivers, a proliferation of highway checkpoints and a scarcity of staff at Chinese ports have slowed shipments even for elements which can be nonetheless being produced, Reuters has reported. Air cargo companies have additionally decreased companies in response to crew well being considerations and unsure demand.

China is India’s greatest buying and selling companion, however India’s imports of Chinese items contracted in February to their lowest ranges in practically 4 years, commerce ministry knowledge reviewed by Reuters confirmed.

Scrambling in India

Smartphone makers in India to date have largely weathered the virus disaster, partly as a result of they’d constructed up inventories of Chinese-made elements to cowl the Lunar New Year vacation interval when China’s factories shut down.

But these shares may dry up quickly. S.N. Rai, the co-founder of homegrown smartphone maker Lava, mentioned the provision of some elements had resumed, however the tempo of manufacturing at his manufacturing facility on the outskirts of New Delhi may quickly decelerate.

“The period between March 10 and March 20 is going to be very tough,” Rai informed Reuters. “In the absence of supplies, we might have to cut one or two of the three eight-hour shifts we have daily.”

Others are scrambling for elements too.

The India items of contract producers Wistron Corp, which makes a few of Apple’s lower-priced iPhones, and Flex have, via an business physique, requested for presidency assist in securing elements together with digicam modules and shows from China, in accordance with two business sources.

Wistron and Flex didn’t instantly reply to Reuters’ requests for remark.

Chinese smartphone makers Oppo and Korea’s Samsung Electronics (005930.KS) didn’t reply to requests in search of touch upon their provide chains.

(Reporting by Sankalp Phartiyal and Philip George; Additional reporting by Aditi Shah, Aftab Ahmed, Manoj Kumar and Brenda Goh; Editing by Jonathan Weber and Maju Samuel)