Elon Musk’s Tesla wants import duty reduction but won’t commit to manufacturing in India: government sources

Two days after Tesla founder Elon Musk tweeted that the e-car maker was still working on numerous challenges with the government, sources said Tesla wanted the Center to lower import duties on cars without no production commitment in India.

Currently, Tesla can bring cars in completely knocked-down form (CKD) duty-free and assemble and sell them here. The government has introduced a PLI program for the automotive sector, particularly electric vehicles, which Tesla will benefit from if they produce here, sources said.

With such tweets, Tesla is trying to pressure the government, sources told Republic TV, adding that the automaker wants import duty relief without any commitment to produce locally.

Responding to a Twitter user, Elon Musk said on Thursday that the company faces “a lot of challenges” in India. However, he said Tesla was working on these challenges with the Indian government.

Telangana Min KT Rama Rao offers to help Tesla CEO Elon Musk settle in India

In response to Musk’s tweet, Telangana Industry and Trade Minister KT Rama Rao said he would be happy to partner with Tesla to work on the challenges the company is facing in India.

Rao wrote: “Hey Elon, I am the Minister of Industry and Commerce of Telangana State in India. is a champion of sustainable development initiatives and an excellent business destination in India.”

In July last year, Musk had expressed hope that Tesla electric vehicles would be able to enter Indian markets thanks to “temporary tariff relief” from the Centre. The billionaire acknowledged that India’s import duties are among the highest in the world. Additionally, he said temporary import duty relief for Tesla would be “much appreciated” and help launch its latest electric cars in the country as soon as possible.

Image: AP

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