Tesla can benefit by manufacturing electric vehicles in India: Nitin Gadkari

  • Union minister Nitin Gadkari last month said that Tesla must not import cars to India from China.
File photo of Tesla electric cars  (Bloomberg)
File photo of Tesla electric cars 

It has been more than a year since Tesla registered its Indian arm in Bengaluru but the electric models from the company are still nowhere to be seen on Indian roads. The government has been encouraging the electric vehicle giant to establish local manufacturing in the country and on Monday, Union road transport and highways minister Nitin Gadkari highlighted that if the US-based EV maker manufactures its electric vehicles in India then it will also get benefits.

Speaking at an event in Delhi, Gadkari said that those days are not very far when the prices of all electric vehicles will be less than or at par with the cost of petrol vehicles in the country. "If Tesla manufactures its electric cars in India, then they will also get benefits," the minister said.

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Earlier on April 26, Gadkari had said that if Tesla is ready to manufacture its EVs in India then there is 'no problem', but the company must not import cars from China. "If Tesla CEO Elon Musk is ready to manufacture in India then there is no problem... come to India, start manufacturing, India is a large market, they can export from India," he had said at an interactive session at the Raisina Dialogue (Read full report).

Last year, the country's heavy industries ministry had also asked Tesla to first start manufacturing its electric vehicles in the country before any tax concessions can be considered for it. At present, cars imported as Completely Built Units (CBUs) attract customs duty ranging from 60-100 per cent, depending on the size of the engine, cost, insurance and freight (CIF) value less or above $40,000.

In a letter to the road ministry last year, the US firm had stated that the effective import tariff of 110 per cent on vehicles with customs value above $40,000 is "prohibitive" to zero-emission vehicles. The company had requested for a standardization of the tariff on electric cars to 40 per cent, irrespective of the customs value while also withdrawing the social welfare surcharge of 10 per cent on electric cars.

(with inputs from PTI)

First Published Date: 02 May 2022, 16:34 PM IST

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