Tamil Nadu plans to offer a raft of incentives and special sops for 3-5 years to attract electric vehicle manufacturers and allied industries to complement the central government push to 100% EV mobility in the future. The state will give investors in the electric vehicle industry the option to choose from GST refunds, capital subsidies, and payroll-based incentives in a first such offer for any sector, provided its draft electric vehicle policy gets implemented, a top government official dealing with the policy said. “On offer are special benefits for industries that come to Tamil Nadu within the first 3-5 years, a kind of an early-bird package,” the person said on conditions of anonymity.
“All three options have never been put on offer before,” the official said. The first two were on offer during the recent Global Investors Meet (GIM), but we are extending all three of them to electric vehicles [manufacturers]. At the GIM, the investment needed to be Rs 500 crore for a company to get these benefits, but for EVs, we are looking at a much lower slab.” To encourage electric vehicle purchase, the draft policy also suggests waiving road tax – again with a 5-year validity period – for those who buy electric passenger vehicles. The capital subsidy on offer for electric vehicle makers in the new policy could be a little more than what is on offer for traditional automobile manufacturers, and will scale even higher for battery pack makers, said another official involved in drafting the policy.
The draft policy is currently under consideration of the finance department, and the final document is expected to be unveiled by the end of this month. Tamil Nadu had drawn a range of automotive manufacturers such as Hyundai, Ford, BMW, Daimler and Nissan in 1990s through value-added tax refund policies which needed an overhaul after the goods and services tax regime kicked in in July 2017. Even as it deliberates on a new industrial policy to incorporate tax refunds in the new order dominated by GST, Tamil Nadu’s efforts to draw EV manufacturers have got a leg up with Hyundai manufacturing its electric car Kona from its Chennai unit. The state government is also planning two electric vehicle parks – likely to be near Chennai and in Hosur along the Tamil NaduKarnataka border – as a common infrastructure for vendors to EV manufacturers.