With almost all the top OEMs in India are ready with electric technology, the ball has been in the government’s court to ensure a conducive scenario for large scale adoption of zero emission vehicles by consumers. Clear EV policies and incentive structure are need of the hour and it looks like the country is not far away from setting things into motion.
According to ET Auto’s sources, the government is planning to roll out an incentive scheme which could offer rebate on purchase of electric vehicles by up to Rs 50,000 in addition to lowering the loan interest rates and categorizing them under priority sector lending. The net benefit is expected to bring the acquisition cost of EVs comparable to that of conventional IC-engined powered vehicles.
The move is a part of the government’s push to increase the market share of EVs to 15% in the next five years. Given that only 1,200 units of 3.3 million passenger vehicles sold in FY18 were EVs, the government has its works cut out.
Even though the electric vehicles have clear advantage over conventional vehicles in terms of running costs (can be up to nearly four times cheaper), they are 2-2.5 times more expensive to buy. The comprehensive sops which are being planned by the government would bring down this disparity by a significant extent. The state governments could augment this initiative by waiving road and registration taxes for EVs. Partial or full waiver of parking charges for EVs are also being considered.
The government is also focusing on setting up adequate charging infrastructure across the country to enhance the practicality of using an electric vehicle. Ministries that are stakeholders of electric mobility has already started issuing notifications to encourage local manufacturing of electric vehicles and establishment of charging infrastructure.
Department of revenue has lowered basic custom duties and GST on EVs as well as raw materials for manufacturing related components. Ministry of power has come up with guidelines for charging stations and subsidized electricity for this purpose in cities and highways. Notification by ministry of housing and urban affairs to amend the building code and town planning rules to include adequate number of charging stations has also been released.
A comprehensive set of incentives and rebates for electric vehicles is set to be issued by the central government in the coming weeks. The plan is likely to be rolled out in select cities in its initial phase for a fixed period.