GM bets big on exports from India

General Motors India, which has two plants with a combined capacity of 2.82 lakh units per annum, is betting big on export of cars from the country.

The company would start export of cars late this year. "Export out of India is an attractive proposition. India has a skilled workforce, strong supplier base and strong engineering skills," president and MD of GM India Lowell Paddock said.

"The countries earmarked for exports are yet to be firmed up," he told reporters here last night.

Paddock said GM has a plant in South Korea, which functions as an export hub.

So far, GM India had been selling cars to Nepal and Bangladesh in a limited way.

Besides exports, the company is also willing to have a strong domestic presence.

"We want to have a strong domestic market. To have that, there is a need to increase the level of localisation. As dependence on imports will make us vulnerable to foreign exchange fluctuations," Paddock said.

Amid downturn in the automotive sector, GM India's sales in 2013 showed a de-growth of 6 per cent at 86,000 units.

Paddock said the cut in excise duty as announced in the interim budget would stimulate the industry.

He said GM India had refreshed its entire portfolio last year with the launch of SAIL hatchback, SAIL sedan and Enjoy MPV.

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