India: Top ten markets for machine tools

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What are the challenges faced by machine tools manufacturers?

Import of used machinery is still quite sizable in India as the number of small & medium scale manufacturers still find the new, high-end machines beyond their reach. Besides this, the delivery time after placing an order is significantly high. But the real challenge for the Indian machine tool industry is to achieve the degree of sophistication, technological precision, and reliability in performance as these are the strongholds particularly of Japanese and European manufacturers. Competing with them on these fronts is the real challenge.

How will the implementation of Goods and Services Tax (GST) impact the machine tool industry?

GST is a revolutionary tax reform in the history of India and has been the most awaited step for strengthening the Indian economy. The machine tool industry or the manufacturing sector in general has to brace up to the new tax structure. This has put a full stop to the unpredictable and indirect tax regime. I therefore think that a single and simpler structure will boost the investments in India and ultimately extend support to the ‘Make in India’ initiative. The manufacturers will have to redesign their manufacturing and supply-chain strategy to obtain optimum benefits from GST with minimum compliance. All of us are still new to this horizon; let’s keep our fingers crossed.

What are the company’s expansion plans? How are you planning to increase your footprint in the Indian market?

We have started manufacturing special tools which will strengthen our presence in various sectors such as automotive, aerospace, medical, oil & gas, etc. The company has also started regrinding of drills which has benefited small / medium entrepreneurs and increased our reach to deeper pockets of the industry. Most importantly, we are planning to launch our Technical Centre in India with world-class facilities. This will be a state-of-the-art creation and will take us closer to the customers in terms of reliability.

Highlights of the Interview

• India among top ten markets for machine tools

• India’s machine tool consumption exceeded `100 billion mark

• Automotive and auto components industry accounted for 40% of machine tools consumption

• GST to boost investments and extend support to ‘Make in India’ initiative

• Real challenge for Indian machine tool industry: Achieve high degree of sophistication, technological precision, and reliability in performance

• MMC Hardmetal India to set up new plant at Aurangabad to manufacture special and make-to-order cutting tools

• Company to launch Technical Centre in India with world-class facilities

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