The Maharashtra state government, which recently announced its EV Policy, has initiated talks with potential investors for setting up battery manufacturing facilities within the state. Battery cost and its technology evolution influences the rate of electric vehicle (EV) adoption, and the presence of a fully localised battery manufacturing factory could help a state grow its EV industry.

  • Government eyes setting up of a gigafactory or two in the state
  • Reliance industries to set-up manufacturing facility in the state

“We are very actively interacting with industrial houses to promote the manufacturing of EV batteries, and soon we will find that many investors take interest in setting up this battery manufacturing units here in the state,” Subhash Desai, Industries Minister, Government of Maharashtra, told our sister publication Autocar Professional.

The names of the potential investors were not divulged, but Desai says they are “local as well as global”. One of them is set to be Reliance Industries, which has recently announced a Rs 60,000 crore investment plan to build a variety of components for the new energy ecosystem, including advanced batteries.

Encouraging local entrepreneurship in the EV space is also a focus for the state government, according to Desai. While the state government conducts discussions with prospective investors of a gigafactory or two in the state, Desai says the focus is also on training and skilling local students and building a talent pool in the state which is fit for the EV ecosystem.

Developing industry-ready personnel

Availability of ‘industry-ready’ personnel has been an issue in varying degrees in the domestic ICE vehicle industry for long. Cognisant of the challenge, the Maharashtra government has taken measures to ensure availability of more industry-ready manpower, which is essential for the state to retain its position as a major auto hub. “The skill development corporation of Maharashtra is very busy since the past four years in converting the conventional courses into industry specific courses,” says Desai.

Incentives aimed at fuelling demand for EVs, setting up charging infrastructure are key for mass scale EV adoption in the state, and the country, but factors like availability of local supply chain (battery being the most crucial) and local talent pool would also be crucial in the growing competition among states vying to be major EV hubs. That explains the focus on these areas by the Maharashtra government, a major auto hub in the traditional ICE vehicle industry.

Also see:

India gets 350 new EV charging stations installed under FAME II scheme

Tata Power ties up with HPCL to set up EV charging stations

Production-spec Mahindra eKUV100 EV spied ahead of 2022 launch

India’s largest public EV charging station opens in Navi Mumbai

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