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India will be a manufacturing hub for electric vehicles in five years, Union minister Nitin Gadkari on Thursday said and urged players to grab opportunities amid changed circumstances in the wake of the Covid pandemic.
The road transport minister stated that global businesses are looking at possibilities outside China.
Addressing a webinar on ‘India’s Electric Vehicle Roadmap post-Covid-19’, Gadkari assured the electric vehicles sector of all the support in view of disruptions caused by the coronavirus crisis.
(Also read: Gadkari bats for ‘Make in India’ for EV components)
According to a road ministry statement, Gadkari “expressed confidence that in the next five years, India will become a manufacturing hub for electric vehicles”, and said the government is trying to extend “best possible concessions” to this sector.
The minister said the government has lowered the GST on electrical vehicles to 12 per cent.
Gadkari said he was aware of the issues facing the EV sector, but was also sure that things would change as sales volume rises.
On the present trend in the global market, he said, “The world is no more interested in doing business with China, which is a very good opportunity for Indian industry to pick up the shift in business.”
Gadkari further said that with petroleum fuel being available in limited quantity, the world has to look for alternate and cheap sources of power, and added that electric and bio fuels stand a good chance for adoption.
He also said that ensuing vehicle scrapping policy will give a fillip to the auto manufacturing sector.
The minister cited the London model of public transport, where private and public investment is working well, the statement said. He said similar approach will be beneficial in India for both the poor commuters and the civic administration.
He also talked about plans like working on a pilot project for developing an electric highway on the upcoming Delhi-Mumbai Green Corridor.
Gadkari expressed full confidence in the capabilities of the auto sector, and said, with consistency and self confidence in this economic crisis, it can gather good market opportunities.
He also called upon the industry to go in for indigenisation and support Prime Minister’s ‘AtmNirbhar Bharat Abhiyan.’