Nokia to continue focus on Indian market despite tax issue
New Delhi: Finnish handset maker Nokia, embroiled in tax dispute with Indian authorities, Thursday said that despite this issue it will continue to focus on the country's market that is big.
"When I think about the Indian market, I think first and foremost about a very large country whose economic wealth is growing, sometime a bit less, sometimes more. Nonetheless, it is a growth economy where the entire society is being effected by mobility... That's the highest order of consideration," Nokia CEO Stephen Elop said here.
He was responding to query on the impact of tax issue on the company's investment plan in India.
"As it relates to the tax situation, obviously we feel strongly that we have been very good citizens in terms of paying the appropriate authorities, appropriate taxes. As you know that matter is now in the courts... We always work for the normal process," he said.
The Income Tax Department had slapped a tax notice of Rs 2,000 crore on Nokia's Indian subsidiary for violating the withholding tax norms since 2006 while making royalty payments to the parent company in Finland. The tax demand which also included penalty was, however, stayed by the Delhi High Court.
"It is (India market) competitive and lot of other companies have figured that India is a very attractive place to serve consumers. We don't mind having that competition. We look at India as a place where we should be very focused, we continue to be very focused and be successful as we have been in the past," Elop said.
The Government of Finland has filed an application with the Indian government to settle the Rs 2,000 crore Nokia tax case under the Mutual Agreement Procedure (MAP). The Indian government is yet to take a decision on the application.