Maharashtra government aims to increase new vehicle registration at 10 percent of all vehicles registered by 2025. Bombay alone will benefit from a network of 1,500 charging stations. 15 percent of MSRTC buses will comprise of en electric fleet. Alongside demand and supply side incentives, incentives are on offer to set up advanced chemistry cell battery manufacturing plants.
The state is also keen on a 1 giga watt battery manufacturing plant. Incentives are set at 5k per kWh of battery. Max incentive for electric two-wheelers (scooters, motorcycles, bikes) is capped at Rs 10k, and for electric three-wheelers at Rs 30k. EVs will be exempt from road tax, and registration costs. Maharashtra is also working on car scrappage incentives.
Following a revision in FAME II policy, states have been quick to announce a revision to their own policies. States are taking a similar yet unique approach to the policy. Following Delhi, and Gujarat, Maharashtra has chosen to make allocations. Thus far, a large number of states have chosen not to make an announcement yet. With most states still chalking out details, for now, new strategies and approaches aren’t all too clear to understand. Further revisions too can be expected as governments get into nitty gritties, or else this could all come to nought.
Benefits of the programmes are projected to be quite modest to start with. For now, it remains unclear when the outline of FAME II policy will meet its goals. This is especially true, considering initial draft goals were not met in entirety despite revisions.
Reducing carbon footprint and attaining green goals for a better environment is top priority. If these goals are to get closer to reality by the end of the decade, then changes need to be enforced in quick time. An initial approach focuses on incentivising the process. This would mean the government aligns with incentivising production as well as purchase.
On the one hand, focus could likely be on tax breaks for investments made in sustainable technologies and on the other hand to impose disincentives for those that employ unsustainable ones. But this approach can’t go hand in hand under current circumstances. Transition to wider acceptance of electric vehicles can’t be at the cost of penalising an age old and established industry that contributes greatly to GDP.
However, current policy revisions being initiated encourage the general outlook wherein automotive businesses will be concentrating on cutting down their carbon emissions. Over time, businesses could be given beneficial credits if they undertake projects that cut down carbon emissions by a certain percentage. Although these schemes are meant to be incentive based, there is an inherent drawback. Following the initial period of enthusiasm, what will sustain EV industry growth in the short term?
“The Maharashtra government’s new EV Policy is extremely comprehensive and has taken into account the entire EV ecosystem. The incentives offered for both the demand and supply side will accelerate the adoption and the manufacturing of EVs in the country. In addition to demand incentives, the policy also incentivizes buy-back, and vehicle scrappage. Early bird incentive is a great mechanism to jump start things, as well as to drive festive sales. Ather Energy is geared to cater to the rising demand in Maharashtra through its retail outlets in key cities like Mumbai, Pune and plans to expand to Nashik and Nagpur soon. Such progressive policies introduced by the state governments have the potential to drive faster adoption of electric vehicles in the country.”
Mr. Sohinder Gill, CEO Hero Electric & Director General, SMEV said, “The Maharashtra government policy grants us the privilege to reach out to our potential customer base in the state. With the amendment of FAME 2 by the central government and now the individual state policies like this one have only encouraged the adoption of electric vehicles in India. The added subsidies from the government on batteries and overall vehicles apart from encouraging battery makers to invest in the state will only aid to the growing interest among investors and companies looking to make an entry into the manufacturing of parts for the segment. At Hero, we are looking forward to this new phase of Electric mobility that will be driven with the states and the consumers who are looking up to a green, clean mode of transport.”
Mr. Naveen Munjal, MD, Hero Electric said, “With the announcement of revised EV policy by the state of Maharashtra, we expect the shift towards EV mobility in the country to gain more traction in the coming few days. The policy that aims to convert 10% of their overall EVs by 2025 and install 1500 charging station across the state, will only make EVs an attractive option for mobility in the state. Hero Electric is committed towards such initiatives and we are elated to further expand our reach with government support. We are extremely bullish about achieving our targets of 1 million scooters on road over the next few years.”
The announcement by the Maharashtra government is not only encouraging for the EV industry but also solidifies India’s vision of becoming a global EV hub. These much-awaited measures offer to bridge the chasm between awareness and consumer sentiment towards e-mobility. We hold steadfast optimism towards states announcing a revised policy with a special focus on demand creation. An inclusive and pragmatic approach to E-mobility and charging infrastructure is imperative to boost innovation and increase uptake among consumers. We thank the government for the EV Policy, which will create a positive impact and help in the acceleration of green vehicles in the state.