A specialised body for promoting sustainable development of the Indian auto sector, dubbed the National Automotive Board, is likely to be set up by April.
“The proposed National Automotive Board (NAB), which is being finalised by the Department of Heavy Industry, is likely to be cleared by the Cabinet in a month,” an official said.
It will act as a facilitator between the government and the industry, promote research and development activities and have a larger role in developing skills for the growing automobile sector, he added.
Besides, it would act as a think-tank for the government, especially for the growth of hybrid and electric vehicles in the country.
The board will have members from the Department of Heavy Industry, Planning Commission and from various ministries, including Road Transport and Highways, Science and Technology, Environment and Forests. Besides, there would be scientists and industry representatives on the board.
The board will be the successor of the National Automotive Testing and R&D Infrastructure Project (NATRIP), which is a project implementation body.
“NATRIP was formed to set up new auto testing and R&D centres along with upgrading the existing ones. Now, these centres have been established and some of them have been upgraded. Therefore, its role has been completed,” the official said.
NATRIP was set up for upgradation of three existing automotive testing and R&D centres -- the Vehicle Research and Development Establishment (VRDE) at Ahmednagar, Automotive Research Association of India (ARAI) at Pune and International Centre for Automotive Technology (ICAT) at Manesar.
In addition, NATRIP’s mandate was to set up four greenfield centres at Chennai, Indore, Silchar and Rae Bareilly for automotive testing, homologation and R&D.