02:44 GMT18 May 2021
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    In January, US-based multi-billionaire Elon Musk registered his electric vehicle (EV) company Tesla in India and chose Bengaluru as the site to establish the firm's research and development (R&D) centre. The EV company's entry to India was wildly awaited in the country and Musk has claimed the Tesla Model 3 will run on Indian roads by mid-2021.

    In a bid to rope in more of Musk's interest in the nation, India's federal Transport Minister Nitin Gadkari has suggested that he begin manufacturing Tesla cars in India citing the "economic viability" of the idea, news channel Times Now reported on Friday.

    Gadkari's suggestion was made during the ongoing sixth edition of the Raisina Dialogue inaugurated by Prime Minister Narendra Modi earlier this week and is being organised by the Ministry of External Affairs.

    While revealing that Tesla already sources several auto components from India, Gadkari said the sooner Musk launches his EV manufacturing in India the better it will be for his company because in the next two years India will have other brands also competing with Tesla's standard offerings.

    "I will suggest Tesla that it will be a golden opportunity for them to start a manufacturing facility in India. I suggest that you start manufacturing as early as possible. It will be beneficial for you", Indian media quoted the union transport minister as saying.

    While pushing the "Make in India" initiative, Gadkari also mentioned opportunities for Tesla exports from the country.

    In recent years, several US-based tech players like Qualcomm and Apple have poured in billions of dollars in setting up manufacturing facilities in India. In 2019, Apple began exporting "Made in India" iPhones around the world.

    Prime Minister Modi has been putting a focus on attracting as many manufacturers as possible from around the world to set up production hubs in India.

    Earlier in February, Modi's Cabinet approved a new $1 billion Product Linked Incentive (PLI) scheme aimed at further attracting tech manufacturers to India.

    In April of last year, the government-approved PLI scheme directed for mobile phone and component makers delivered production worth $4.8 billion, created 22,500 jobs and brought around $179 million in investments, the Indian PM noted during a webinar with industry experts in March.




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