LOWERING THE CARBON FOOTPRINT
Delhi Government is soon likely to (orne out policy to incentivise people willing to shift from fossil fuels as an energy source to electric energy, informed Mr. Kailash Gahlot, Cabinet Minister, in charge of Transport, in the Delhi Government.
The transport minister added that it is imperative to bring down cost of electric vehicles to make it affordable and viable for public transport, while addressing "the ASSOCHAM International Conference on 'Electric Vehicles: Future Roadmap for India', held on December 19, 2017.
Seeking guidance to expedite process of procuring electric buses in Delhi, Mr. Gahlot urged the electric vehicle manufacturers to come forward and advise on how to move . ahead in this regard. "Delhi government is very keen and more than willing to induct electric buses, we are open to every idea, suggestion which can help us place orders as fast as possible, we are absolutely ready."
He, however, said that it is a C'hallenge for Delhi Government to bring in electric buses as the entire infrastructure and ecosystem needs to be created. As such he advised the industry leaders to provide for complete solution instead of just focusing on selling the electric vehicles.
Mr. Gahlot further said that while Delhi Government has already given commitment to induct 100 electric buses, it is
willing to increase the fleet to 1,000 as soon as possible.
He also sought clarity on Union Government's FAME Scheme (Faster Adoption and Manufacturing of Hybrid and Electric Vehicles), a program of incentives offered to EVbuyers to help improve adoption and sales. "Even under the FAME scheme, there are lot of gaps and there is lot of ambiguity, like for instance there is no clarity amid manufacturers when asked whether or not they would qualify in the kilo metre scheme," said the Delhi Transport Minister. "More clarity in this regard will help us move swiftly," he added.
He further highlighted that the shift to electric and hybrid buses is slow in India, mainly due to cost factor. The average cost of hybrid or electric buses is 3-4 times higher than diesel buses. Further, with the decrease in the cost of diesel, there is not much incentive for the operators to shift to hybrid or electric buses. "Cost of electric buses at Rs 2.75crore is way too high and unsustainable, I would request the central government for more subsidy along with financial and technical help", he added. Further, there should be subsidy on power to be consumed by electric vehicles.
In his address at the ASSOCHAM conference, NIT! Aayog CEO, Mr. Amitabh Kant impressed upon the need to bring in better technologies like electric vehicles in India's automobile and auto component sector to ensure better quality of life for its citizens.
Highlighting the importance of the sector, Mr. Kant said that automobile and auto component sector contributes about 7.2 per cent to India's overall Gross Domestic Product (GDP), creates over 30 million jobs and almost 25 per cent of its total manufacturing is exported abroad.
"So whatever we do, we must understand that the role of automobile and auto component sector must continue to grow and expand, to be a job creator, to be a GDP contributor and to playa major role in exports," added the NITI Aayog CEO.
He said that in the electric vehicular segment, objective is to accelerate the pace while ensuring that India maintains its size and scale, its GDP share, employment share and that is possible only if we are able to produce to size and scale.
"We will continue to support this movement in a very big way, we will continue to support all OEM and Indian manufacturers, we would like major disruptions to take place in India, we would like interoperable charging systems and we would like to support EVs by a vast range of initiatives like lower road taxes and push them and the government will act as a catalyst to support this entire movement so that automobile and auto component sector continues to playa very major and significant role in India's GDP, job creation as well as exports," said Mr. Kant.
"As a policy framework this cuts across several departments - Ministry of Road Transport, Power, Heavy Industries but we in NIT! Aayog will continue to coordinate and drive this movement," he said further.
"The change is inevitable but we should do it in a manner where we do not disturb combustion vehicle manufacturing, we should do to size and scale which will enable India to become the centre for manufacturing, battery manufacturing for usage as well as for exports," he added. "It is possible to do this in India because our per-capita usage of cars is still very low."
(L-R) Mr. D. S. Rawat, Secretary General, ASSOCHAM, Mr. R. S. Kalsi, Chairman, ASSOCHAM National Council on Auto, Mr. Sandeep Jajodia, President, ASSOCHAM, Mr. Ashim Sharma, Partner, Nomura Research, Mr. Kailash Gahlot, Hon'ble Minister of Transport, Government of NCT of Delhi, Mr. Naveen Munjal, President, Society of Manufacturers of Electric Vehicles and Mr. Nishant Arya, Executive Director, J8M Group.
Mr. Sandeep Jajodia, President, ASSOCHAM in conversation with Mr. Kailash Gahlot, Minister for Transport, Government of Delhi.
Mr. Sandeep Jajodia, President, ASSOCHAM welcoming Mr. Amitabh Kant, lAS, Chief Executive Officer, Niti Aayog.