The north-eastern state of Assam has joined a number of other States in India including Maharashtra, Delhi, Tamil Nadu, Andhra Pradesh and Telangana in announcing an Electric Vehicle Policy, which has been notified on September 4.
The overarching goal is the same – Assam, which has an estimated 40 lakh vehicles on its roads, aims to accelerate the pace of adoption of electric mobility to improve air quality levels as well as create an ecosystem for manufacturing EVs and EV components.
In its EV Policy, the Assam state government is targeting EVs to be 25% of all new vehicle registrations – either under individual use or commercial use – by five years or 2026, which is the Assam EV Policy duration. These 200,000 EVs will comprise 100,000 two-wheelers, 75,000 three-wheelers and 25,000 four-wheelers.
Assam also plans to convert 100% of its public transport bus fleet into electric buses (Battery EVs) by 2030, which is when all government vehicles will also be converted into EVs. What’s more, the government document states that after 2025, only electric vehicles will be purchased by the state government, which is in line with the overall game-plan to phase out all fossil fuel-based commercial fleets and logistics vehicles in all its cities by 2030.
Incentives for EV ownership, manufacturing
Like a host of other States which have offered handsome incentives to motorists and fleet owners to shift from IC engine vehicle to EVs, the Assam EV Policy underlines just that. Similarly, the incentives are over and above any subsidies that are available from the Central government and are based on the battery capacity (as measured in kWh) as detailed below:
As per the Assam EV policy, the maximum amount of subsidy should not be more than the 40% of the ex-factory price of the vehicle. There is exemption / reimbursement of registration charges and road tax on two-, three- and four-wheeler EVs as well as full waiver on parking charges for EVs till 2026. There is also a retro-fitment incentive of 15% up to Rs 15,000 for three-seater autorickshaws.
In a move to encourage EV charging companies and OEMs to create EV charging infrastructure, privately-owned, DISCOM-owned and investor-owned charging and battery swapping stations as well as commercial public EV charging stations will be eligible for 25% capital subsidy on equipment/machinery subject to maximum limit of Rs 10 lakh per station. This incentive will be provided to the first 500 commercial public EV charging stations. The State government is to exempt 100% electricity duty of EV charging stations during the five-year period of the EV policy.
As regards incentives for manufacturing EVs or EV components, in addition to the 30% capital investment subsidy available under North East Industrial Development Scheme (NEIDS) 2017 or any subsequent policy from the government of India or state government, such units will be eligible for the following additional incentives:
- 20% of cost of plant and machinery up to Rs 15 lakh for Micro Units
-20% of cost of plant and machinery up to Rs. 50 lakh for Small Units
- 20% of cost of plant and machinery up to Rs 1 crore for Medium Units
- 10% of cost of plant and machinery up to Rs 10 crore for Large Units
Recycling of EV batteries
The Assam EV policy also mentions recycling of EV batteries. It states, “Re-use of EV batteries that have reached the end of their life will be encouraged and setting up of recycling businesses in collaboration with battery and EV manufacturers that focus on ‘Urban Mining’ of rare materials within the battery for re-use by battery manufacturers will be promoted.”
A nodal agency will be appointed to act as an aggregator to purchase EV batteries that are at least 70% of rated capacity. These batteries will be purchased from the charging points and battery swapping stations and will then be re-used as ‘power banks’ to store renewable energy
Other highlights of the policy include plans to create a pool of skilled workforce for the EV industry through the technical intuitions in the State and focus on cutting-edge research in EV technologies.
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