Centre To Invite Bids For 40GW Battery Plant

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The large-scale battery manufacturing proposal is aimed at making storage systems competitive in India so electric vehicle adoption becomes more viable. 

The government is considering a plan to establish a battery making capacity of 40 gigawatts (GW) to give a boost to its electrical vehicles and renewable energy initiatives, an official said to Economic Times.

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It will ask states to compete for the opportunity to set up internationally competitive facilities that will also service global markets. Domestic and global battery makers will be asked to bid for setting up plants in the selected states. 

Plan of action
The proposal is expected to entail investments of $40 billion in the next two-three years and is likely to garner interest from global battery manufacturing firms and renewable energy players such as SoftBank, Tesla and Panasonic, another government official said to the English Daily.

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The Centre is working on fiscal and non-fiscal measures to enable states to set up manufacturing units as competitive as those in China. Bids will be judged on the basis of land, incentives, power tariff discounts and regulatory and industrial support. Plants have to be competitive so that exports are commercially viable. 

The large-scale battery manufacturing proposal is aimed at making storage systems competitive in India so electric vehicle adoption becomes more viable. 

Batteries and battery cells are imported from the likes of China and the US. With plans to add 175 GW renewable energy generation capacity by 2022 and ensure that 30 per cent of India’s vehicles are electrically powered by 2030, the demand for battery storage is pegged at 300 GW. 

The proposal is part of the National Mission on Transformative Mobility and Battery Storage approved by the Cabinet in March. An inter-ministerial steering committee chaired by Niti Aayog chief executive officer Amitabh Kant has been set up to promote clean mobility initiatives. This involves a phased manufacturing roadmap to implement large-scale battery module and pack assembly plants by 2019-2020, followed by integrated cell manufacturing by 2021-2022. 

According to ET, the state officials welcomed the proposal but said the Centre needed to ponder challenges such as battery technologies, integration with existing EV makers and Chinese competition. 

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