The Association of Indian Forging Industry (AIFI) the apex body of the Indian forging industry kickstarted the 7th edition of Asia Forge at Chennai today. The two-day long event was inaugurated by Sajjan Jindal, chairman and MD, JSW group and Dr Ashok Jhunjhunwala, professor at IIT Madras delivered the key note address.
Also present on the occasion were the host of Asia Forge 2019, the Association of Indian Forging Industry (AIFI), represented by S Muralishankar, president, AIFI, R Sivaparasad Reddy, vice-president, AIFI, Abhay Raj Kapoor, convenor Asia Forge 2019 and Vikas Bajaj, co-convenor, along with the managing committee members.
As per a survey conducted by the forging association in September 2017, the estimated turnover of the 378 functional forging units across India in FY2016-17 was Rs 31,189 crore providing employment to over 200,000 people in the country. The report also suggests that the installed capacity also increased from 37.6 lakh MT in FY2014-15 to 38.5 lakh MT with overall production of forgings increased from 22.5 lakh MT to 23.9 lakh MT.
Backed by surge in overall auto sales last year and renewed thrust on infrastructure development, AIFI predicts impressive growth for the Forging Industry and anticipates around 10 percent demand growth in the year 2019.
The 2019 edition marks India hosting the industry meet after a gap of 10 years in its 7th edition, AIFI had earlier hosted the second Asia Forge meeting in 2008 in Delhi. This year’s is been designed to showcase the latest trends in the global forging industry and give participants an opportunity to keep abreast of new developments and best practices in the industry across the globe.
It is also an ideal platform for the Indian forging industry to showcase its technological prowess, network and interact with global experts and strengthen bonds with international forging associations.
Speaking on the occasion S Muralishankar, said, “Hosting of the 7th Asia Forge in India, after a gap of over 10 years, is a truly momentous occasion for the Indian forging industry. Our decision to host the event was to facilitate our industry, to acquaint ourselves with the latest trends and technologies in the global forging industry with the expectation of bench marking some of the best practices and displaying India’s technological prowess and engineering capabilities to the global experts. The Indian forging industry is faced with some truly interesting and challenging years ahead and the Asia Forge platform will help us to be prepared for future opportunities.”
The even sees a range of interesting and in-depth technical and business programs for its participants, covering topics ranging from tooling to automation, including overviews of the forging industry in different countries in Asia. Participation from over 14 countries will be represented at the Asia Forge 2019 including China, Japan, Taiwan, Korea, Germany, Italy, France and Belgium among others. Additionally, it will also witness an exhibition which will see 75 companies displaying their products and services.
According to AIFI the Indian forging industry is looking at Asia Forge 2019 and the experience of global experts therein, for answers on evolution, modernisation, technologies and cost rationalisation, to meet the growing demands in the years ahead. Other key areas that will be discussed over the next few days are - coping with the lack of skilled manpower, optimal utilisation of raw material in order to meet the challenges on competitiveness. All of these are expected to be discussed threadbare, with innovative solutions being sought for all.
Sharing his thoughts R Sivaparasad Reddy, said, “We believe that the Asia Forge 2019 will play a critical role in strengthening the bonds amongst Global Forging Associations. These meetings have always played an important role in the evolution of the forging industry across the world and shall continue to do so by providing collaborative platforms to address the challenges faced by the industry. This is also a recognition of the Indian forging industry’s strong management, engineering and technical capabilities, that have helped us to become established suppliers to the global automotive and other key industries. We now could build on this strong foundation and further consolidate our position.”