Tesla India executive reportedly resigns after company puts EV plans in the country on hold

A key executive who was leading Tesla’s lobbying effort in India has resigned, after the US carmaker put a halt to plans to sell electric cars in the South Asian nation, two sources familiar with the matter said. told Reuters.

Manuj Khurana, Policy and Business Development Executive Tesla in India, was hired in March 2021 and was instrumental in creating a domestic market-entry plan for the US carmaker in the country.

He lobbied the Indian government for more than a year to reduce the import tax on electric cars from 100 percent to 40 percent, something Tesla said would allow it to test the market with imports from its production centers. China Before investing in a factory.

But Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s government insisted that Tesla must first commit to manufacturing cars locally before it could make any concessions. With the talks deadlocked, Tesla halted its plans to sell the cars in India, reassigned some of the home team and abandoned its search for a showroom location.

Neither Khurrana, the company’s first employee in India, nor Tesla responded to requests for comment. An email sent to Khurrana prompted an automated reply stating that the address is no longer valid and that future emails will not be received.

A source said, “Tesla’s plans to launch in India right now are deadlocked.”

The sources wanted to remain anonymous as the resignation had not yet been made public.

Tesla Chief Executive Elon Musk Last month, it said on Twitter that the company would not set up manufacturing in any location where it was not previously allowed to sell and service cars.

The carmaker has also shifted its focus to other markets in Southeast Asia, such as nickel-rich Indonesia, where it is looking at potential battery-related investments, as well as Thailand, where it recently started selling cars. A local entity is registered.

© Thomson Reuters 2022

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