Metal forming plays a vital role in manufacturing of diverse products in automobile sector, high-precision components for instrumentation and electronics industries, and is the backbone of manufacturing in many other sectors. Metal forming machines constitute around 25 percent of the total consumption of machine tools in India, and around 69 percent of the metal forming machines consumed in India are imported. The consumption of metal forming machinery in India during FY 2018-2019 was around `5,590 crore. The sector which is unevenly spread out geographically with many small and medium players besides some large entities is projected to grow further as it continues with its initiatives to enhance the quality and standard of its products.
Indian metal forming booming
There has been a surge in demand for high precision machine tools in the country’s sunrise sectors including aerospace and defence, railways, power, medical equipment manufacturing, construction, consumer durables, furniture, for the last few years, which normally is being met through imports. Domestic manufacturers have realized the importance of innovations and technology development to reduce the dependency on imports. They see this achievable through judicious use of resources to improve their brand image, broadening their customer base, and enhancing their competitive edge as well.
Speaking about the challenges, Indradev Babu, President, Indian Machine Tool Manufacturers’ Association (IMTMA), says that the Indian metal forming sector is evolving and warming up to the developments. The fear of low demand and profit margins are the bottlenecks that need to be addressed, especially with SMEs that have constraint on budgets. Babu adds that changes are occurring with foreign firms setting up bases in India through joint ventures, mergers and acquisitions, leading to technology transfer.
Adding on to Babu’s views, V Anbu, Director General & CEO, IMTMA, opines that metal forming offers immense potential for highly productive and specialized niche machines and processes. 3D printing closely associated with near net shape manufacturing is also heralding new developments in manufacturing. The high level of automation adopted by the auto sector in sheet metal forming, presses, as well as robotics for welding can be replicated in other sectors. Customers are also realizing the potential of Industry 4.0 in the metal forming industry for quality improvement and safety in handling sheet metal, etc.
IMTEX FORMING, organized by IMTMA, will bring the global manufacturing fraternity, products and innovations on a common platform, and the advancements in metal forming when showcased to user industries will pay rich dividends. IMTEX FORMING 2020 & Tooltech 2020 will showcase digital manufacturing (3D printing and technologies that form Industry 4.0) in dedicated arenas. Visitors will have a lot to unearth from exhibitors coming from around 25 countries during the show.
Metal Forming machines constitute around 25 percent of the total consumption of machine tools in India. The consumption of metal forming machinery in India during FY 2018-2019 was around `5,590 crore.