Elon Musk postpones his scheduled visit to India: Reports

Elon Musk. Photo Courtesy: Twitter/@PIB_India

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IBNS-CMEDIA: Tesla chief Elon Musk has postponed his scheduled visit to India, media reports said on Saturday.

Tesla CEO Elon Musk’s two-day visit to India, where he was supposed to announce plans to enter the Indian market, has been postponed, sources told India Today.

He was supposed to visit India on April 21 and April 22.

During his visit, he is scheduled to meet PM Narendra Modi.

Tesla CEO Elon Musk is set to announce an investment of $2-$3 billion in India, primarily aimed at establishing a new factory, during his upcoming visit to New Delhi to meet with Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Reuters reported, citing sources.

Musk will arrive in India next Monday and is anticipated to disclose his plans to enter the world’s third-largest auto market, where the adoption of electric cars is still nascent.

India’s electric vehicle (EV) market, though small, is on the rise, currently dominated by local manufacturer Tata Motors.

EVs accounted for merely 2% of total car sales in 2023, but the government aims to elevate this to 30% of new car sales by 2030.

Also Read: Elon Musk likely to announce $2-$3 billion investment for Tesla factory in India

Musk’s visit coincides with Tesla’s efforts to address declining sales in key markets like the United States and China, as the company recently announced layoffs affecting 10% of its workforce.

Details of Musk’s visit to India are closely guarded, with the CEO confirming only on his social media platform X that he will meet Modi.

According to the sources, Musk is expected to unveil an investment figure for India during the visit, while specifics such as the timeline or the location within India for the factory remain undisclosed, the Reuters report said.

Musk has long been critical of India’s high import taxes on EVs and advocated for a change in policy.

In March, the Indian government unveiled a new EV policy, reducing import taxes to 15% from as high as 100% on certain models if a carmaker invests at least $500 million within three years and establishes a factory.

Tesla has already started scouting locations for showroom spaces in New Delhi and Mumbai, and its Berlin factory is producing right-hand drive cars intended for export to India later this year.

Musk is also likely to participate in an event organized by the Indian government in New Delhi focused on space startups, given his ownership of the U.S. space company SpaceX, according to the Reuters report.

During his visit, he is also expected to engage with several spacetech startups in New Delhi.

These startups, such as Skyroot Aerospace, Agnikul Cosmos, Piersight, SatSure, KaleidEO, Bellatrix Aerospace, and Dhruva Space, represent a rapidly expanding sector that has significantly evolved from just five startups in 2019 to over 190 active ventures today, reported Khaama Press.

India’s spacetech industry received a substantial boost in 2022 with Skyroot Aerospace successfully launching the country’s first private rocket, the news agency reported.