THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: In a major decision that can catapult the state into a global hub of modern technologies, Nissan Motor, the second largest Japanese car maker, is likely to set up its global digital hub, ready to meet the demands of future cars, from its stable in Thiruvananthapuram. The top officials of the company are in the capital city to finalise the plan. If the deal goes through, the state could become the hub for electric car technology, rivalling the manufacturing prowess of neighbouring Tamil Nadu.
Company officials have been holding talks with Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan who invited them to the city to make the final pitch. “The deal has in-principle approval. Good news is likely in two days,” said a source. According to him, the arrival of Nissan digital hub would be shot in the arm for the government to attract global companies and retain top talents. The visit came a day after the state successfully hosted the first global digital summit, #Future, to boost the image of the state as the next big IT destination for future technologies.
The global investment comes at a time when car makers are investing heavily in AI, machine learning and other technologies that power electric vehicles. Nissan and its automaking partners, Renault SA and Mitsubishi Motors Corp, have plans to launch 17 electric models to achieve annual vehicle sales totalling 14 million units by 2022, compared with 10.6 million units in 2017. The visiting team held presentations before Union Minister of State for IT Alphons Kannanthanam and Thiruvananthapuram MP Shashi Tharoor on Sunday. “The global digital hub is expected to create thousands of jobs. Spoke to Chief Minister and he agreed to extend full support,” said Kannanthanam in his Facebook post.