Daily Management Review

Foreign Auto Firms Express Interest In Purchasing Ford Plant In India, State Minister


Following unsatisfactory talks with the Tata Group, the industries minister of India's Tamil Nadu state stated on Thursday that foreign automakers had expressed interest in buying Ford Motor Co's plant there.
Ford India said in September that it would cease its manufacturing operations at a facility in Western Gujarat by the end of 2021 and car and engine production at a plant in Tamil Nadu by 2022, citing a lack of profitability in the nation. 
"Early stage talks are going on," Thangam Thennarasu, industries minister of Tamil Nadu said in an interview with the news agency Reuters, and added that no details of the companies that had expressed interest could be divulged by him.
"It is eventually up to Ford as it will be a commercial arrangement. We are merely facilitating talks between the companies," he said.
Interest in purchasing the factory that is to be vacated by Ford had also been expressed by the Tata Group, Thennarasu said and added that company representatives had met with the chief minister of the state and had made a visit of the factory to conduct a preliminary study. However, there has not been any communication from the Tata Group to the state government about any possible deal for the factory. 
"It is now up to them to make an official announcement," Thennarasu told Reuters in an interview last week.
"We continue to explore possible alternatives for our manufacturing facilities but have nothing further to share," said Ford in a statement when Reuters asked the American auto company about which companies could be interested in buying the Tamil Nadu factory.
Tamil Nadu, a state with a population of over 70 million people and one of the most industrially advanced states in India, is frequently referred to as the "Detroit of Asia." 
It is home to manufacturing facilities for global brands such as BMW, Daimler, Hyundai, Nissan, and Renault, among others.
Electric vehicle and battery manufacturers have expressed interest in the state, according to Thennarasu. He stated that Ola, a ride-sharing business that has opened an electric scooter manufacturing factory in the state, has expressed ambitions to expand.