Tesla’s Lower Import Duty Proposal Backed by Various Government Organizations: Report

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The Society of Indian Automotive Manufacturers (SIAM) had earlier explained how the concessions will only help ultra rich

Tesla’s call for lowering import duties on electric vehicles has been backed by various government institutions. A report published in the Times of India notes that several government organizations including the likes of road transport ministry, NITI Ayog, and the department for promotion of industry and internal trade have backed Tesla’s proposal.

The report adds that the sole government organization not backing the same happens to be the heavy industries ministry. Certain conditions, before facilitating the lower import duties might be mandated for the likes of Tesla.

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These might include sourcing parts and components from local Indian companies, as well as investing heavily in developing the EV charging ecosystem. The same might help in encouraging a better ecosystem in the country.

If they have to manufacture here, they need the numbers and no can test the market when you impose such high import duty on the vehicles,” TOI quoted a high-ranking officer.

The Society of Indian Automotive Manufacturers (SIAM) had earlier explained how the concessions will only help ultra rich. SIAM had also noted that the economically weaker sections of the society were already paying 28 per cent tax on buying two wheeler which are nominally priced. The country, at the moment, levies 110 per cent duty on importing electric vehicles that are priced $40,000.

The society is of view that if these duties are brought down to 40 per cent then local companies might feel discouraged to make efforts towards assembling autos here in the country.

Tata Motors and Ola Electric had backed the arguments made by SIAM, whereas Hyundai noted “it helps a responsibility minimize for imported EVs”. Tesla’s poster boy Elon Musk had recently tweeted about the ‘high’ import duties on electric vehicles in the country.

“We want to do so (launch cars in India), but import duties are the highest in the world by far of any large country. Moreover, clean energy vehicles are treated the same as diesel or petrol, which does not seem entirely consistent with the climate goals of India,” read Musk’s tweets.

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