Elon Musk, the CEO of Tesla, revealed that India’s Prime Minister, Narendra Modi, is urging the car company to make a substantial investment in the country. Musk stated that an official announcement regarding this matter is expected in the near future.
Musk’s statement followed a meeting with Modi during the Indian leader’s visit to the United States. A Reuters source had previously mentioned that Musk would update Modi on the plans to establish a manufacturing base in India.
Musk emphasized that India possesses great potential for a sustainable energy future, particularly in areas such as solar power, stationary battery packs, and electric vehicles. Additionally, he expressed his desire to introduce SpaceX’s Starlink satellite internet service to India.
“He (Modi) really cares about India because he’s pushing us to make significant investments in India, which is something we intend to do,” Musk told reporters after the meeting.
“I am confident that Tesla (NASDAQ:TSLA) will be in India and will do so as soon as humanly possible.”
Later, India’s foreign ministry tweeted saying Modi had invited Musk to “explore opportunities in India for investments in electric mobility and rapidly expanding commercial space sector.”
According to a Reuters source, India is considering allowing certain American companies to engage in initial collaborations with Indian firms for investments in its space industry. This move follows India’s decision to permit private launches in 2020 and its aim to boost the global market share of its private space companies by five times in the next ten years.
Recently, representatives from Tesla visited India and engaged in discussions with Indian government officials and ministers regarding the establishment of a manufacturing facility for cars and batteries in the country. Elon Musk, the CEO of Tesla, previously mentioned that the company would likely select a location for a new factory by the end of this year, expressing India’s appeal as a potential site.
As tensions between the United States and China persist, American companies are seeking to decrease their reliance on China as a manufacturing base. Last year, Tesla postponed its plans to enter the Indian market due to the high import tax structures in place.
In a report published by Reuters last month, it was revealed that Tesla had put forward a proposal to establish a factory for the production of electric vehicles. Additionally, the company was exploring the possibility of manufacturing electric vehicle batteries within the same country. “They are very seriously looking at India as a production and innovation base,” federal minister Rajeev Chandrasekhar had told in May.
After the Indian government insisted that Tesla manufacture cars locally, the company’s initial plans to establish a base in India were put on hold last year. Tesla expressed its preference to first export to India in order to assess the market demand before local production.
Elon Musk further expressed his desire to introduce the Starlink satellite internet service, operated by his company SpaceX, to India.
“We do not want to jump the gun on an announcement but I think it is quite likely that it will be a significant investment in our relationship with India,” he told reporters.
On Tuesday, Prime Minister Modi arrived in New York for a three-day state visit that is considered a significant milestone in the bilateral relations between India and the United States.
As part of the visit, Prime Minister Modi will receive a ceremonial welcome at the White House on Thursday, followed by direct talks with President Joe Biden. This meeting is expected to hold great importance in shaping the future course of relations between the two countries.