Nitin Gadkari again woos Tesla to invest in India

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New Delhi: Transport minister Nitin Gadkari who is visiting US has offered American automotive company Tesla various sops including land parcel to form joint ventures with Indian automobile companies to intorduce pollution free road transportation in India.

In a press statement, the transport ministry said that Gadkari along with transport ministry officials visited Tesla factory near San Francisco and asked them to look at collaborations with Indian automobile firms to manufacture electric and solar-energy based automotives. The idea is to have special eco-friendly automobile fleed for commercial and public transportation in India. Gadkari also asked Tesla to outline their proposals for entry into Indian market.

Offering land on any of the major ports in India, Gadkari told Tesla’s senior executives to make India their Asia manufacturing hub and extended support to facilitate exports of their vehicles to South and South East Asian countries. Gadkari said the Indian government was committed to encouraging alternate pollution free transport in the country by providing incentives to bio-fuel, CNG, ethanol and electric vehicles.

Replying to specific queries from the transport and highways minister regarding manufacturing of electric trucks, buses and two wheelers, Tesla team said they have future plans for trucks and pick up vans but not buses and two wheelers. They evinced keen interest in knowing whether there was any subsidy on electric vehicles in India. Gadkari was informed that 400,000 advance bookings have been done for Tesla’s model X. and there were some bookings from India as well.

Tesla said senior executive admitted that their manufacturing hub has to be outside the US for markets in rest of the world and appreciated the Indian offer of cooperation which they said will certainly be considered at the appropriate time in future. They said India will definitely be a market for their next generation low cost sustainable models.