Addressing a virtual conference ‘9th Edition of Auto Serve 2020‘ Electric Mobility Conference 2020-Seizing Opportunities in New Normal, on November 23, Nitin Gadkari, Minister of Road Transport and Highways & MSME, asked the auto industry to come together to work jointly towards achieving broader national agenda of reducing pollution.
The Minister said that the government aims at creating core global competencies in India by facilitating the seamless integration of the automotive industry with the world. Government is trying to create an ecosystem to accelerate the uptake of electric vehicles in the country.
Further, he detailed on a number of steps that government has taken to promote EVs which include a reduction in GST to 5 per cent, allowing delinking of battery cost of 2-3 wheelers from vehicle cost as it accounts for nearly 30 per cent of the cost etc. Battery charging ecosystem is very important, as such he said Government is planning to set up at least one EV charging kiosk at around 69 thousand Petrol Pumps across the country to induce people to go for e-mobility.
The Minister also said, “Government is also working towards making India a global automobile manufacturing hub in next five years.’ This is my dream, he stressed. This will also contribute to fulfilling the Prime Minister’s vision of Atmanirbhar Bharat. This, he said, is possible as our auto industry has made significant strides in terms of the development of different designs and models, robust R&D, huge market, stable government frame-work and bright & young engineering minds. “India already is the largest manufacturer of two-wheelers in the world,” he added.
The government has earmarked over Rs 51,000 crore for the automobile sector under Production Linked Incentive (PLI) considering the huge potential of the sector. This is the highest amongst the 10 champion sectors, told the Minister. There is a huge requirement of about 25 million skilled jobs in the automobile sector in near future. This very significant as this industry is going to create maximum jobs and growth, Gadkari added.
He further asked the automobile industry to push for manufacturing flex engines which have the versatility to use petrol or ethanol/CNG as fuels. He stressed that the Indian auto industry needs to follow the example of Brazil and US Auto sectors in this regard. He exuded confidence that our industry would utilise the opportunity being thrown up by the alternative and less polluting fuels like CNG, hydrogen, electricity.