Piyush Goyal visits Tesla facility amid talks of the EV maker's India launch

The Centre is looking at slashing customs duty to 15 per cent for all-electric vehicles to encourage Tesla to set up an EV manufacturing facility in I
Tesla Piyush Goyal
Union Commerce Minister Piyush Goyal seen sitting inside a Tesla electric car at the EV maker's California facility during his visit earlier today. (Image courtesy: X/@PiyushGoyal)
Tesla Piyush Goyal
Union Commerce Minister Piyush Goyal seen sitting inside a Tesla electric car at the EV maker's California facility during his visit earlier today. (Image courtesy: X/@PiyushGoyal)

Commerce and Industry Minister Piyush Goyal has visited the manufacturing facility of US-based electric vehicle major Tesla at Fremont, California and said that the company would be doubling its auto components imports from India.

The minister is in the US on a four-day visit. The world's largest electric car producer Tesla Inc's chief Elon Musk met Prime Minister Narendra Modi in June in New York and after the meeting Musk had said that he planned to visit India in 2024.

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"Visited @Tesla's state of the art manufacturing facility at Fremont, California. Extremely delighted to see talented Indian engineers and finance professionals working at Senior positions and contributing to Tesla's remarkable journey to transform mobility.

"Also proud to see the growing importance of auto component suppliers from India in the Tesla EV supply chain. It is on its way to double its components imports from India. Missed Mr @ElonMusk's magnetic presence and I wish him a speedy recovery," Goyal said on social networking platform X.

The platform is also owned by Musk.

Also Read : India may reduce EV import duty as Tesla launch reports gather steam, says report

The visit assumes significance as there are reports that India is looking at giving customs duty concessions to Tesla for setting up a plant in the country. In September, Goyal said the company is looking to source components worth around USD 1.9 billion from India this year against USD 1 billion in 2022.

Going forward, demand for electric vehicles will increase and it will help in pushing the growth of the sector. Earlier, the government had stated that it is not looking to frame a separate policy for providing incentives to Tesla, and the company can apply to avail support measures under existing schemes like PLI for auto and advanced chemistry cells.

The government has rolled out the production-linked incentives (PLI) schemes (PLI) for advanced chemistry cell (ACC) battery storage with an outlay of 18,100 crore and 26,058 crore PLI scheme for auto, auto-components and drone industries.

When asked whether the government is considering duty concessions on completely built-up units to attract certain sections of electric cars into India, Goyal in September had said that "everything we have done has been done equally without any differentiation, without any preferences. This is the government which provides equal opportunity to everybody. So we will come out with a policy".

In August 2021, Musk had said Tesla might set up a manufacturing unit in India if it first succeeded with imported vehicles in the country. He had said Tesla wanted to launch its vehicles in India "but import duties are the highest in the world by far of any large country!".

Currently, India imposes 100 per cent import duty on fully imported cars with CIF (Cost, Insurance and Freight) value more than USD 40,000 and 70 per cent on those costing less than the amount.

First Published Date: 14 Nov 2023, 10:39 AM IST

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