Forthcoming quarters look promising for Indian machine tool industry

  • Interviews
  • Dec 30,22
In this interview with Rakesh Rao, Ravi Raghavan, President of IMTMA and MD of Bharat Fritz Werner (BFW), analyses the performance of the machine tools industry.
Forthcoming quarters look promising for Indian machine tool industry

…says Ravi Raghavan, President of IMTMA and MD of Bharat Fritz Werner (BFW), in this interview with Rakesh Rao, while analysing the performance of the industry.

Is the machine tools industry's growth trajectory moving in the right direction now as was expected (estimated) at the start of CY 2022?
Indian machine tool industry has been doing well in terms of consumption and production. The half-yearly results have been good, and the forthcoming quarters also look promising with some good order bookings in spite of the geopolitical and economic slowdown on the anvil. India’s production for April to September period FY 2022-23 is estimated to have reached Rs 4,286 crores and consumption during this period is estimated to have reached Rs 9,906 crores.

What are the suggestions of IMTMA to the government for Budget 2023?
We have following recommendations to the government:

  • Technology development: Budgetary support for new product development.
  • Ease of doing business: Land for manufacturing industries may be allotted to industries on a nominal upfront payment and through long-term annual lease rent, instead of recovering full price.
  • Exports: Setting up Brand India Technology Centres which would be an effective way to promote Indian capital goods and engineering products in overseas markets.
  • Higher depreciation for machine tools
  • PLI for machine tools
  • With the global market slowing down, what impact will it have on machine tools industry?
    As far as machine tool industry is concerned, we have a large domestic market where demand is steady. This apart, the government thrust on infrastructure development, business from PLI industries is propelling the economy from recessionary pressures. Also changing geo-political situation would benefit India’s machine tool business.

    What are the hurdles on the growth path?
    Primarily, the machine tool industry needs to overcome bottlenecks pertaining to increase in cost of raw materials impacting margins, rise in fuel prices affecting logistics, and challenges in supply chain. The geo-political situation in Europe is impacting manufacturing as prolonged war and sanctions will impact logistics, banking, and business. Also with the excess capacity, global machine tool businesses would dump machines in India at lower prices.

    Do you see automotive industry to continue to propel demand in the coming months?
    For decades, we have been serving auto industry requirements, the growth of auto sector and machine tool industry goes in tandem. Auto industry is machine tool industry’s largest customer. We are witnessing an increase in vehicle production and supplies to dealers along with good demand from end consumers. Indian machine tool industry is strong when auto industry is strong and the recent surge in auto sales bodes well for machine tool industry as it gears up to organise IMTEX.

    What will be the effect of the growing electric vehicles (EVs) industry on the machine tools demand?
    The onset of EVs will pose some challenges to auto component industry and the machine tool industry, but internal combustion engine vehicles are still going strong with a good market share. We don’t see a threat in the near term. Interestingly, metal forming industry, including our member companies, has got good orders from the EV industry.

    What are key trends to watch out for in the coming years?
    Some of the emerging trends are:

  • Digitalization across the entire manufacturing ecosystem
  • Enhancing the build quality encompassing visual appeal to align with global products
  • Software tools for simulation, modelling, analysis, automation, etc. at deeper intensity
  • Additive manufacturing adoption besides building additive manufacturing machines, and
  • Building high-performance and high-speed machines and offering solutions to various sectors
  • Any message to the industry on the eve of IMTEX 2023?
    Manufacturing propels business growth while exhibitions provide unique opportunities for businesses to thrive and IMTEX is an ideal platform for both.

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