Parakramsinh G. Jadeja, President, Indian Machine Tool Manufacturers’ Association (IMTMA)
As the much awaited IMTEX is around the corner, President of IMTMA, Parakramsinh G. Jadeja talks to Mfgtechupdate about the current state of the Indian machine tool industry, investment opportunities, challenges faced, technology and of course about the fast approaching mega event.
Tell us about the current Indian metal cutting machine tool industry? How is the demand pattern in India for metal cutting machine tools?
Globally India is placed 10th in terms of consumption. The demand for machine tools is undergoing a rapid change in tune with the requirements of user industries. There is a good demand for horizontal machining centers, cylindrical grinding machines, milling and boring machines and gear cutting machines.
Production in metal cutting machine tools is around Rs 4,200 crore. Domestic production accounts for over 40% of total consumption. The consumption is primarily driven by automobile and auto component sectors besides die and mould, railways, ordnance, defence and industrial machinery. Japan, Germany, Italy and South Korea primarily operating in the high technology segment.
Turning centres and machining centres contribute to more than 70% of the total market for metal cutting machines. Domestic manufacturers have a significant share in turning centers, vertical machining centers and grinding machines.
Important sectors which have an impact on the growth in the demand for metal cutting machinery include automobiles, aerospace, defence and railways among others.
What are the challenges faced by the Indian machine tool industry?
Machine tool industry in India is comparatively small compared to any other manufacturing industry. It plays an enabling role for development of manufacturing industry, but there are areas where there is scope for development. Some of them are:-
- Although the industry has good design and manufacturing competence for a wide range of products, the product range and the technologies manufactured in India have a substantial gap with the ones manufactured overseas. The user industries expect the latest technologies to produce high quality end products at competitive prices. This has made it imperative for the machine tool industry to take an inventory of present technologies and those it should develop.
- The industry investment in product development through R&D is currently around 2.5%, whereas in other developed/ developing countries it is higher at around 4%. We need to improve on this.
- Technological advancements would always benefit the entire manufacturing value chain. Since this is at the bottom of the pyramid, attracting investments is critical. However, there is ample opportunity for industries that are at the level of small and medium enterprises to grow and become large companies with better investments both at R&D and productivity levels to meet the current demand of manufacturing industry.
- The prevailing interest rates for machine tool industry in India are quite high (around 14 to 18%). Our tax should be structured in such a way that Indian products are subjected to taxes as they are in overseas nations. Introduction of Goods and Services Tax is expected to usher in the much needed change.
- The industry has to compete for talent with other industries such as IT and retail. The industry is taking steps to develop skills through larger academic and industry partnership in manufacturing for all round development of skills.
- With the gradual development of the machine tool industry and the industry becoming more organized the level of imports can be reduced for both medium and high technology in future.
What are the initiatives taken by IMTMA to uplift the Indian machine tool builders?
IMTMA works closely with various government departments such as the Department of Heavy Industry, the Department of Industrial Policy and Promotion and Tariff Commission among others for making the Indian machine tool industry strong and vibrant. Due to this IMTMA has been instrumental in setting up an Advanced Machine Tool Testing Facility in CMTI premise at Bengaluru, Advanced Centre of Excellence for R&D and Technology Development at IIT, Madras, and the first Integrated Machine Tool Park in Tumkur which is being built by the Government of Karnataka.
Working with the Tariff Commission, IMTMA was able to get a reduction in customs duty for critical components used in the machine tool industry.
Further, IMTMA through its Tech Centres in Bengaluru, Pune and Gurgaon imparts training for engineers and industry fresh hires to inculcate in them skills required for enhancing productivity.
In developed countries, the industry-academia partnership is a very common practice whereas in India it’s in a very nascent stage. Is IMTMA taking any steps to promote such partnerships in India?
Through the Industry-Institution (i2 Academia Pavilion) IMTMA has been able to build an industry-academia linkage. IMTMA has created a Industry-Institution Collaboration (III-C) to bring the industry and various institutions known for their R&D on a common platform to find solutions and work together for the betterment of the machine tool industry. The i2 pavilion featured in every IMTEX has served as a forum for developing products and promoting innovation. There are numerous technological challenges when addressing the needs of user industries. IMTMA has also created an Advanced Centre of Excellence for R&D and technology development with IIT, Madras. This is a unique opportunity for machine tool units to develop new technologies under the Department of Heavy Industries (DHI) scheme and enhance competitiveness of the industry.
IMTEX is around the corner; please tell us about the new initiatives that have been taken for the exhibitors and visitors?
The 18th edition of IMTEX 2017 and concurrent exhibition Tooltech will be held at the Bangalore International Exhibition Centre (BIEC) from January 26 to February 1, 2017. For this edition, IMTMA has come up with certain initiatives to help exhibitors and visitors:
- IMTEX 2017 will be held in 6 halls. IMTMA has built an additional hall of 17,500 sq.mts. The hall will be inaugurated during the event. The exhibition will be displayed in a gross area of 66,000 sq.mts.
- IMTMA has come up with an Expo Platform for IMTEX 2017. This is a networking platform and management system for events. It allows visitors and exhibitors to register, gain access to floor plans and product catalogues, manage their schedules, market successfully, create analytics, secure full control of data, establish contact through mobile apps, etc. It also allows visitors to generate their own batch.
- IMTMA and EEPC India will jointly organize a Reverse Buyer Seller Meet during IMTEX 2017. Dealers, distributors, potential buyers and few key media persons from 15 countries will be invited. IMTMA may organize a few plant visits to machine tool manufacturing companies in Bengaluru.
- IMTEX 2017 will feature manufacturers, suppliers, researchers and trade associations from 22 countries: Australia, Austria, Belgium, Brazil, China, Czech Republic, France, Germany, India, Israel, Italy, Japan, Korea, Serbia, Singapore, Spain, Switzerland, Taiwan, Thailand, The Netherlands, United Kingdom and United States.
- There will be over 1000 exhibitors from 22 countries. The group participation will be from 7 countries: from 7 countries: China, Czech Republic, Germany, Italy, Spain, Taiwan and United States.
- 30 institutions expected to take part in the i2 Academia Pavilion.
- Connect an awareness programme to impart knowledge on machine tool industry for young and budding engineers will be organized during the event.
IMTEX is an opportunity for the machine tool companies in India… Your views on the same.
IMTEX exhibitions are always great forums for technology exchange. The event showcases the latest technologies and manufacturing solutions from across the globe. At IMTEX 2017 customers will be pleased to see and learn from the emerging technologies.