New Delhi: The Union Cabinet on Thursday approved setting up of a National Automotive Board (NAB), a body which would act as a facilitator between the government and the industry and promote R&D activities in the sector.

"The Union Cabinet has approved the NAB proposal," a senior minister said after the Cabinet meeting.

According to sources, NAB will be a specialised body for promoting sustainable development of the Indian auto sector. Besides, it would also have a larger role in developing skills for the growing automobile sector.

The board would also act as a think tank for the government, especially for the growth of hybrid and electric vehicles in the country.

It would 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, they said.

The total expenditure on NAB is estimated to be about Rs 2-3 crore per annum, an official said.

"NAB is expected to become self-sufficient in three years. The funds for NAB will initially be made available from the Automotive Cess administered by the Development Council for Auto and Allied Industries, under the Department of Heavy Industry," he said.

Some of the important new ongoing initiatives for the auto sector which will be facilitated by NAB include the National Mission for Electric Mobility (NMEM), Intelligent Transport Systems (ITS) and Inspection and  Certification (I&C) regime.


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