Photo: Supercars Of India
India's Transport Minister has made it clear that Tesla will have to produce the vehicles in the country in order to sell them to the local market. For this, the state will provide the necessary assistance. At the same time, he emphasized that Tesla cars made in China are not welcome for sale in India.
At India's foreign policy and geoeconomics conference, Raisina Dialogue 2022, the Union Minister of Road Transport and Highways of India, Nitin Gadkari, said that India has no problem if Tesla is willing to make cars in the country. He welcomed this, saying that cars could also be exported from there.
“If 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 said.
Gadkari stated that India is a huge market with great potential for the development of all-electric vehicles. This is true, although today, in fact, the primary if not sole constraint for this development is government policy, which continues to stop the progress and entry into the country's market of a wide range of EVs at affordable prices for its citizens.
While Gadkari's main request to Tesla CEO Elon Musk was for the company to start manufacturing in India, he also made a point about imports. The minister said he thought it was a bad option to sell Tesla cars made in China in the Indian market.
“But if he [Elon Musk] wants to manufacture in China and sell in India, then it cannot be a good proposition for India,” Gadkari said.
Currently, cars imported as completely built units (CBUs) are subject to customs duties ranging from 60% to 100%, depending on engine size and cost, as well as the value of insurance and freight (CIF) less than or greater than $40,000. Thus, the cost to the end user would be very high. This would prevent Tesla from studying the market to see if there is any point in further development in the country. The manufacturer has filed a request for an import duty reduction for zero-emission vehicles.
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