Foton PMI to invest Rs 500 crore to set up electric bus manufacturing unit in Pune

NEW DELHI: PMI Electro Mobility Solutions Pvt Ltd (PEMSPL) on Thursday said it plans to invest Rs 500 crore along with its Chinese partner Beiqi Foton Motor Co (Foton) for setting up an electric bus manufacturing plant at Pune in the next two to three years.

PEMSPL, which holds 70 per cent in its joint venture with Beiqi Foton with the rest by the Chinese partner, also said it has entered into a pact with budget carrier SpiceJet to supply electric buses for its operations at Indira Gandhi International Airport here.

“Currently we (PMI) have a manufacturing plant at Daruhera in Haryana for conventional buses which can also roll out electric buses. With new orders coming in we have decided to set up an electric bus manufacturing plant at Pune where Foton’s facility is there,” PEMSPL Vice-Chairman and Executive Director Anurag Agarwal told PTI here.

He said Foton PMI has bagged orders to supply 700 electric busses to Uttar Pradesh in the next one year. It has already supplied 50 electric buses to Himachal State Road Transport Corporation.

Elaborating on the company’s future plans, Agarwal said,”we will be investing around Rs 500 crore at the Pune plant in the next two to three years.”

Currently Foton PMI has 55 per cent local manufacturing and complies with FAME II scheme requirement, Agarwal said, adding, “we intend to take this up to 75 per cent in the next two to three years.”

The majority of the investment will be borne by PEMSPL, he said adding the Chinese partner could hike its investment in the JV in future.

Beiqi Foton Motor Chairman Zhang Xiyong said the company has already made an investment of Rs 350 crore since it started India project in 2011.

“Foton PMI will explore the electric commercial vehicles (CV) market in India and in future plans to launch other models such as medium high and light electric trucks,” he said.

Moreover, Xiyong said, “we plan to use India as the manufacturing hub for electric CVs for exports to global markets including South East Asia, Middle East and Africa.”

The new plant will have a capacity to produce around 500 electric buses a month, Agarwal said adding construction will start by March next year.

Commenting on the partnership with SpiceJet, Agarwal said initially five electric buses will be supplied for use in internal operations by the carrier and there is option to increase it further.

SpiceJet Chairman and Managing Director Ajay Singh said, “we are already using electric cars at airports. We would like to replace each one of our existing buses with electric buses.”

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