Tesla Giga India rumors are being prompted once again by a meeting between CEO Elon Musk and Prime Minister Narendra Modi has been set up to take place within the next few days.
Modi left for the U.S. early on Tuesday and will meet with Musk, along with 23 others, ranging from a variety of sectors and interests, the Times of India reports.
Musk is just one of the meetings that Modi will have, but it is perhaps the most interesting in terms of business development, as Tesla and India have been working hard for several years to come to terms on an agreement that would see the automaker set up a production facility in the country.
We’ve covered the developments for the past few years, and the long and tumultuous story of Tesla and India has culminated into perhaps what is finally an agreement between the two entities to begin a dedicated partnership with one another.
Both Tesla as a company and India as a government have wanted things that make the partnership difficult to establish. Tesla has wanted to test demand for its vehicles in the region for several years by importing cars from China. However, India has a strong interest in keeping manufacturing domestic to help support its economy and job creation market.
Because of this, India has set up vehicles to be the subject of sizeable import duties, which, in some cases, can double the price of a vehicle.
However, Tesla has asked India to temporarily roll back these import duties in an effort to make the demand test more realistic, as the taxes make the vehicles too expensive for many. India has agreed to do so, but only if Tesla explicitly commits to building a plant in the region first.
While talks eventually stagnated, and Tesla pulled out of the plans, there has always been mutual interest between the two, and it appears a deal is closer to getting done than ever before.
Musk and Modi’s meeting has no announced agenda as of yet, but with Q2 coming to an end and Tesla planning to establish its next Gigafactory location by year’s end, you can bet the topic will likely be the terms of a demand test.
Earlier this year, Musk confirmed Tesla would announce a new Gigafactory location by the end of the year. When he was asked about India’s potential to land the factory and whether it was an option, he replied, “Absolutely.”
However, several other regions have entered the mix, including France and Spain. Musk met with French officials last week during a trip to Europe, and Spain has been heavily rumored to be a potential location that Tesla could use for its next plant.
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