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Business News/ Auto News / India sets up task force to accelerate EV drive
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India sets up task force to accelerate EV drive

Different agencies have been asked for inputs on 11 topics to build an action plan for EV adoption in India.

In India, EV sales have seen robust increase of over 45% in 2024 so far, while total EV registration figure in 2023 surpassed 1.5 million units. (Image: Pixabay)Premium
In India, EV sales have seen robust increase of over 45% in 2024 so far, while total EV registration figure in 2023 surpassed 1.5 million units. (Image: Pixabay)

NEW DELHI:To promote the country’s electric vehicle (EV) ecosystem in line with its vision of Viksit Bharat, the Centre is in the process of establishing a task force to create a roadmap for the industry, according to a letter sent by the ministry of heavy industries (MHI) to automakers that Mint has seen.

MHI will finalise the setup of this task in collaboration with Ficci (Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry) and other agencies.

“The EV task force has been set up to engage with stakeholders through workshops and stakeholder meetings to gather their insights and recommendations on various aspects of electric vehicle adoption and infrastructure development," read the letter.

What the letter says

As per the letter, different agencies have been asked for inputs on 11 topics to build an action plan for EV adoption in India. The agencies have already started work on laying the cornerstone to make India a pioneer for e-mobility transition globally.

“The agencies involved with the foundation of the EV task force have already started approaching original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) to proceed on the project of automotive vision plan for Viksit Bharat 2047," said one person aware of the matter on condition of anonymity.

The ministry of heavy industries and Ficci didn’t respond to queries sent by Mint till press time.

I.V. Rao, distinguished fellow at TERI, one of the agencies in the task force, confirmed the ministry's move.

“While TERI supports other agencies, our primary focus is on identifying and addressing skill gaps in the industry," said Rao. “We have been separately working with heavy duty trucks for a different project, but comprehensive mapping and analysis precede any further action," he added, on whether the task force has already started approaching OEMs.

"Involving all stakeholders is crucial, but equally important is ensuring that the right individuals represent them," Rao said.

Also Read: India wants to be world's car factory. A plan is in the works

Agencies and tasks

GIZ (Deutsche Gesellschaft fur Internationale Zusammenarbeit), a German government and European Union (EU) agency, and Ficci will focus on charging infrastructure, while the Rocky Mountain Imstitute (RMI) will concentrate on two- and three-wheelers.

The Indian Battery Swapping Association (IBSA) has been tasked with spearheading initiatives on battery swapping. The International Council on Clean Transportation (ICCT) will handle matters related to electric trucks, and the World Bank (WB) will oversee the subject matter of electric buses.

Additionally, WRI India (World Resources Institute)/Ficci will look into electric four-wheelers, and the US Agency of International Development (USAID) will be responsible for power electronics, devices, and motors.

The India Energy Storage Alliance (IESA) is assigned to advanced chemistry cell (ACC) technologies. Primus Partners will explore the development of rare earth magnets, essential for electric motors.

Climate Trends will liaise with testing agencies to ensure compliance and standards, while The Energy and Resources Institute (TERI) is charged with skilling and workforce development to support the burgeoning EV sector.

Evolution of EV schemes

Earlier, the government had announced that it will not extend the faster adoption and manufacturing of electric vehicles II (FAME II) scheme, which was introduced in 2019 for three years ending 31 March 2024. It had a budget outlay of 10,000 crore. A further 1,500 core was allotted to the scheme later, with a target to support 7,000 e-buses, 500,000 e-three-wheelers, 55,000 e-passenger cars and 1 million e-two-wheelers.

Also Read: Are EVs more economical than petrol cars now?

In its place, the authorities announced a new scheme called the Electric Mobility Promotion Scheme (EMPS) 2024 with an outlay of 500 crore on 1 April 2024. The scheme, which will provide subsidies for adoption and manufacturing of e-two-wheelers and e-three-wheelers, will be valid for four months from now.

EMPS 2024 will exclusively concentrate on e-two-wheelers and e-three-wheelers categories, while the auto PLI and PM-eBus Sewa schemes are already in place for e-four-wheelers and e-busses.

Further, a new policy was announced on 15 March, the New Electric Vehicle Policy 2024, to promote India as a manufacturing hub for EVs, capping the number of imported EVs at 8,000 per year at a lower customs duty of 15%. Companies that take this benefit will have to set up manufacturing facilities in India within three years and attain a localization level of 50% within five years.

“The government's efforts to foster electric vehicle adoption are evident through their new policy, which has enticed global manufacturers and incentivized consumers," said Gaurav Vangaal, associate director , S&P Global Mobility. “This is complemented by the multiple states that are offering benefits to encourage EV acquisition. However, the absence of direct promotion necessitates collaboration among stakeholders. Bringing them together to amplify the cause reflects an optimistic strategy."

Electric vehicle sales have seen robust increase of over 45% in 2024 so far, notwithstanding the subsidy cuts and regulatory shifts. The total EV registration figure in 2023 surpassed 1.5 million units, significantly higher than the previous year’s score of a little over 1 million. All these have pushed the overall EV penetration in the country to 6.3% as against 4.8% in 2022.

Also Read: Hybrid cars are winning as range anxiety grips EVs

 

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Naman Suri
Naman is a skilled business journalist who excels in breaking down complex financial details. He specializes in the corporate sector, providing thorough coverage of the pharmaceutical industry, the dynamic field of sports business, and the fascinating area of white-collar crime. Naman has a knack for making sense of numbers and presenting them in an understandable way.
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Published: 23 Apr 2024, 01:05 PM IST
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