SMEV Requests For Fund Allocation For R&D, Amendement Of EV PLI Scheme In Budget FY23

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SMEV said while the scheme will certainly have incentives for the large players, it is also creating an unfair price disadvantage for small and medium-size EV players

The Society Of Manufacturers Of Electric Vehicles (SMEV) is looking get electric vehicles to be considered for priority lending by the government to accelerate their adoption along with getting incentives for the exports of EVs in the Union Budget FY23.

Alongside, the industry body has listed few other items in its wishlist, which includes funds to be allocated for R&D in a public-private partnership mode for development of batteries.

Stressing on the need for R&D in battery manufacturing, the body of EV makers said, “unless we work seriously and diligently on EV batteries, we will end up in a situation similar to, if not worse than, our dependence on crude oil.”

The current level of research is abysmally low, diluted, and scattered, it said adding, “the government could allocate sufficient funds for R&D in a public-private partnership mode with a time-bound objective to create EV batteries that are less dependent on offshore minerals and best suited to the Indian condition.”

The SMEV has also noted that there is a need to amend the PLI scheme for automobile and auto components, as in its current form there is an “unfair price disadvantage” for small and medium-size EV players in the industry.

SMEV said while the scheme will certainly have incentives for the large players, it is also creating an unfair price disadvantage for small and medium-size EV players who are not qualifying for the incentives under the scheme due to their size, turnover, and backgrounds.

“Hence, we request the government to create a level playing field through amendments in the scheme so that MSME EV players, all the pre-existing and new players can also participate,” it said.

Under the current PLI scheme for automobile and auto components, among other criteria, an automobile company or group firm with existing presence in India or globally needs to have a minimum of Rs 10,000 crore revenue, while for auto components, the minimum revenue requirement is Rs 500 crore.

Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman is scheduled to present the Union Budget for FY 2022-2023 on February 1.

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