India asks Tesla to lay down EV plant investment plan, ’the ball is in their court as...’

‘We will help them out in terms of giving them the contacts at state level,’ said the secretary of department for promotion of industry

Written By Arshdeep kaur
Updated4 Apr 2024, 07:42 PM IST
Tesla Inc
Tesla Inc(AFP)

The Centre on Thursday said the ball is now in Tesla’s court to lay down its investment plans for India after the government cut import duty on electric vehicles.

Last month, the Department of Industries released a comprehensive policy for boosting EV manufacturing in India

In an interview with Bloomberg, Rajesh Kumar Singh, the secretary of department for promotion of industry and internal trade said that now it's up to Elon Musk’s Tesla to make the announcements of their manufacturing plans.

“We will help them out in terms of giving them the contacts at state level. There have been contacts made at that level with state governments and the central government. VinFast has already announced and we expect a few others,” he said.

VinFast, the Vietnamese automaker recently broke ground on an EV manufacturing facility in Tamil Nadu.

Earlier this week, the Financial Times, citing people familiar with the matter that it didn’t identify, reported that Tesla is planning to send a team of people to scout for locations in India this month for a proposed $2 billion to $3 billion electric car plant.

Tesla would also look to increase purchases of auto parts from the nation to as much as $15 billion, Bloomberg reported in November.

Musk’s carmaker has for years been been making a case for cutting import taxes before it commits to any significant investment in one of the world’s biggest automobile markets. 

To get tax concessions, companies will have to invest at least 41.5 billion and start producing EVs from a local plant within three years, Centre said in March.

Singh said that the policy should help spur growth of EVs in the country.

“We expect it to lead to a penetration of four-wheeler electric vehicles to at least 10% by 2030,” he said. “My view is that if we have these manufacturing units up and running, along with the battery infrastructure that is now going up, it should be closer to 15% by 2030, after which it will just snowball.”

According to BloombergNEF estimates, some 96,000 passenger EVs were sold in India in 2023, nearly double a year earlier, and that could climb by another 40% in 2024. 

India’s electric passenger vehicle market however has to date largely been driven by electric scooters, which are much cheaper. India also doesn’t have very good EV charging infrastructure and the EVs that are on offer are mainly expensive.

(With Bloomberg inputs)


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First Published:4 Apr 2024, 07:42 PM IST
HomeEconomyIndia asks Tesla to lay down EV plant investment plan, ’the ball is in their court as...’

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