The Minister of State for Electronics and Information Technology (MeitY), Rajeev Chandrasekhar, will inaugurate India’s first lithium cell manufacturing facility at Tirupati, Andhra Pradesh, tomorrow, according to a government notification on September 15.
"The inauguration of this plant will be a step in the direction for realizing Prime Minister Modi’s vision of making India the global hub of electronic manufacturing," Chandrasekhar said.
The unit has been set up by Chennai-based Munoth Industries Limited with an outlay of Rs 165 crore. It is located in one of the two electronics manufacturing clusters set up in the temple town, by Prime Minister Narendra Modi in 2015.
The installed capacity of the plant at present is 270 Mwh and can produce 20,000 cells of 10Ah capacity daily. These cells are used in power bank and this capacity is around 60 percent of India’s present requirement, according to the statement. Cells for other consumer electronics such as mobile phones, hearable and wearable devices will also be produced.
At present, India imports 100 percent of its lithium-ion batteries, either as cells or as battery packs, the latter being sold exactly as is, after passing a few government-mandated torture test, primarily from China, South Korea, Vietnam and Hong Kong.
Moneycontrol had earlier reported how localised electric vehicle battery manufacturing may in fact be the only way to realise India’s EV market potential and help the government meet its target of 30 percent private EV sales by 2030.
The report mentioned that at present, battery cells and lithium-ion batteries attract 18 percent GST, unlike EVs as a whole which attract only 5 percent GST. After a draft proposal was sent by NITI Aayog, the Union government is considering lowering the GST slab on EV batteries to 5 percent, and is likely to implement the move very soon. Which means that even the vast majority of the existing EV makers will be able to sell their EVs at a considerably lower cost.
"For starters, the rising costs of lithium, cobalt and nickel has hampered the EV supply chain globally. And for a country like India, the only way towards meeting the growing demand for EVs is via localised cell manufacturing," the report added.