New Delhi: India has the potential to become one of the largest electric vehicle (EV) markets in the world following a push from its government, according to a report released on Thursday by the World Economic Forum (WEF) and the Ola Mobility Institute.
The report said electric mobility holds tremendous promise for India, a global big four producer (besides China, Japan and the US), to curb pollution and reduce reliance on import of fossil fuel.
In this regard, 10 states and union territories (UT) are leading the way in building production, infrastructure and services to increase the momentum of EV usage in India.
However, the report has found that the adoption and uptake of electric vehicles has been slow. Vehicles are costly not only upfront but also on a lifecycle cost basis. In order to overcome these challenges, research and development must be stimulated by setting up funds for research centres and centres of excellence. This would lend to a strong manufacturing base. The role of the government is crucial for accelerating adoption, diffusion and deployment of electric mobility.
“For a price-sensitive market like India, developing incentives for electric (clean) kilometres run versus electric vehicles purchased makes economic sense and is suggested to be the guiding principle for the national strategy," said Christoph Wolff, Head of Mobility, World Economic Forum.
The report--EV Ready India - Part 1: Value Chain Analysis of State EV Policies--examined programmes and policies in Andhra Pradesh, Bihar, Delhi, Karnataka, Kerala, Maharashtra, Tamil Nadu, Telangana, Uttarakhand, and Uttar Pradesh. It highlighted the possibilities for the sector and built a common framework for analysing state EV policies through trend analysis of value chains.
“With many more states in the process of designing their EV policies, policymakers, businesses, and practitioners alike can use this framework to analyse state policies for sustainability and longevity," said Wolff.
While the approaches vary amongst these states and territories, the report highlighted three emerging trends. The first - most states aspire to be manufacturing hubs for EV and EV components. Production of clean-fuel batteries, recycling and storage are incentivised across the board. This aligns well with the national Make in India agenda and can provide case studies for how to roll out similar production facilities. The Uttar Pradesh and Maharashtra EV policies emphasise heavily on promoting EV manufacturing, for example.
The second trend is around infrastructure development. Cities today face many challenges such as a lack of robust charging infrastructure causing range anxiety among users and the high upfront cost of EVs, among others, that need to be overcome to facilitate smooth and swift adoption of electric vehicles at scale. The report said UP was targeting 2 lakh charging stations by 2024, while Andhra Pradesh was targeting 100% electrification of buses by 2029.
The third trend is an emphasis on the services the EV value chain can provide through public awareness. These include skilling programmes in Tamil Nadu, fiscal incentives in Maharashtra and non-fiscal incentives like retrofitment services in Telangana. These are all examples of how states and territories try to connect the consumers and manufactures.