The government’s mission is to make India the number one automobile manufacturing hub in the world and make the auto sector a Rs 25 lakh crore industry, Union Minister Nitin Gadkari said on Thursday.
Addressing a seminar at the Vibrant Gujarat Global Summit in Gandhinagar, the minister asked auto manufacturers to invest in clean technologies, especially in electric vehicles, otherwise, they will “miss the bus”. “We have recently surpassed Japan and become number three in terms of automobile manufacturing. We aim to reach 25,000 lakh crore and become the number 1 manufacturing hub of the world,” he said.
Speaking on air pollution facing major cities, the minister of road transport and highways said, “As a transport minister, we are responsible for 40 per cent of air pollution… We import 85 per cent of fossils… In our country, 40 per cent CO2 emission is seen in the transport sector… We need to find an option which is import-substitute, cost-effective, pollution-free and indigenous.”
Gadkari highlighted that one of the biggest problems related to lithium batteries is its high cost. “We have got 6 per cent of the world’s lithium reserves in Jammu & Kashmir… recently, I asked (officials) to mine it quickly, as we import 1,200 tonne of lithium-ion. If we get this done, we can capture the EV market of the world.”