A €12 million auto cluster recently established in Pune-Pimpri-Chinchwad is the first of its kind in India.

The concept was originally promoted by the Maratha Chamber of Commerce, Industries and Agriculture and the Pimpri Chinchwad Municipal Corporation (PCMC).

A study was submitted to MITCON who prepared a detailed report for consideration by the Industrial Development Bank of India (IDBI). Finally, in April 2004, the Auto Cluster Development and Research Institute was incorporated.

The ministry has sanctioned the €12 million (INR670 million) for the first phase and will increase investment depending on the response. The government contributed €8.9 million, PCMC chipped in €2.6 million and the chamber gave €219,642 in land and buildings- the balance is to come from other associations.

Automotive component manufacturers, trade associations, engineering colleges, research institutes, banks, financial institutions (FIs) and government agencies have been asked to help develop and promote the cluster.

Sectors planned for the cluster include auto electronics, CAD/CAM and rubber/polymer & plastics with grants of €7.2 million. PCMC has earmarked €3.9 million for equity and a further amount to provide interest-free loans for the cluster.

Deepesh Rathore / Tilak Swarup