Tamil Nadu

Tamil Nadu's electric vehicle policy elicits praise from industrialists

Industrialists and start-ups from Tamil Nadu, known as the Detroit of South India, have lauded the State government’s first-ever electric vehicle (EV) policy.

“The policy is not a mere PR (public relations) statement, but a very comprehensive one focusing on all aspects like infrastructure and other incentives,” said Venu Srinivasan, chairman, TVS Motor. “Everyone is slowly beginning to focus on battery technology. Battery prices will come down and become affordable in the next 15 years,” he added.

Mahesh Babu, CEO, Mahindra Electric, described the policy as both progressive and comprehensive in nature. He said it outlined clear adoption strategies for last-mile connectivity through 3-wheelers and shared mobility by 4-wheelers. “We appreciate the demand-side incentives provided by the government, like road tax exemption, zero permit fees and waiver of registration charges for 3-wheelers,” he said. Mahindra was ready with products like the Treo (ion battery-powered three-wheeler e-rickshaw) for helping the State achieve its EV adoption goal, he added.

However, Vishnu K. from the Citizen Consumer and Civic Action Group, an NGO, had a different take on the policy. He pointed out that the timelines for implementing the policy seemed very tight — some deadlines fall in 2022. “The entire policy should ideally be a 15-year window. Even the Central government, if I am not mistaken, has a 2030 timeline for some kind of change,” he noted. He said the tariff rates determined by the State regulator will be crucial to EV market promotion. “If rates are too high, it might affect the uptake,” he added.

Financial support

Tamil Nadu accounts for 6.4% of the electric vehicles sold in the country (as of July 31, 2019). The State government has said it will encourage start-ups in the EV sector and offer incubation services to them in the form of office space, common facilities and mentoring support.

An EV Venture Capital Fund will be created by the government to offer financial support to EV start-ups to enable them to scale up their business, the policy note said. “With this, we inch a step closer to the dream of pollution-free, affordable EV mobility in last mile. While this accelerates the adoption of electric vehicles, it will also open up good avenues for the e-commerce and shared mobility segment,” said Nagesh Basavanhalli, MD and CEO, Greaves Cotton Limited, which owns Coimbatore-based Ampere Electrical Vehicles.

“The policy offers multiple [forms of] non-fiscal support, which will certainly help the industry move forward. However, we had anticipated some fiscal incentives — which are the need of the hour — to boost the sale of personal vehicles, which is currently minimal,” said Sohinder Gill, director general, Society of Manufacturers of Electric Vehicles.

Chennai is home to major automobile manufacturing firms, including Hyundai, Ford, Nissan, TVS, Mahindra and Daimler.

Our code of editorial values

This article is closed for comments.
Please Email the Editor

Printable version | Nov 26, 2021 1:24:17 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/tamil-nadu/ev-policy-elicits-praise-from-industrialists/article29434740.ece

Next Story