Union Minister for Road Transport and Highways Nitin Gadkari on Tuesday asked Tesla to set up a shop in India to sell its electric vehicles in the country. The minister also asked the company not to export cars from China to India.
“If Elon Musk (Tesla CEO) is ready to manufacture in India then there is no problem…Come to India, start manufacturing, India is a big market which they want to build in India,” Gadkari said during an interaction session at Raisina Dialogue. can export from As reported by PTI.
“But if it wants to manufacture in China and sell in India, it may not be a good proposition for India,” Gadkari said.
Further, Gadkari stressed on the fact that India was a huge market and there is a huge potential for electric vehicles in the country.
Tesla in standoff
Tesla has been at a standstill in India for quite some time now. The US-based electric vehicle maker is working hard to import and sell its EVs in India. However, current taxes have barred the company from doing so. Tesla executives have also lobbied in New Delhi to cut taxes for almost a year, which the company’s Elon Musk says is the highest in the world. However, the Indian government has not been convinced as the company has failed to share a detailed plan of investment in the country, something that is in line with Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s ‘Make in India’ vision.
With neither side willing to switch sides, the discussion has reached an awkward standstill.
As of now, India imposes an import tax of 100 percent on electric vehicles whose ‘landing cost’ (car price plus shipping charges) is $40,000 (Rs 30.6 lakh) or more. Tesla says the tax would make India its most expensive market, which in turn would put the car out of reach of most Indian consumers. And so, the company has asked the Indian government to give it tax concessions so that it can start selling cars in India. The company has urged the government to standardize the tax on all electric vehicles to 40 per cent and withdraw the social welfare surcharge of 10 per cent. However, the government has so far denied giving any concession to the company.
Tesla was asked to make the car in India after the Indian government said no to EV imports from China which first appeared on BGR India.