Indian automotive aftermarket cautiously optimistic about future growth

by Autocar Pro News Desk , 27 Nov 2020

With the opening up of the Indian economy and the manufacturing sector, the Indian automotive industry is cautiously optimistic about growth in the coming months.

The rising demand for personal mobility has also contributed to growth in fuel sales especially petrol and diesel, which is now expected to return to pre-COVID levels by the end of the current financial year. As demand for first- and second-hand vehicles continues to expand, the need for auto repairs and servicing will increase bringing a corresponding growth in the automotive aftermarket segment.

The automotive aftermarket industry which, like the vehicle and component industry, has been impacted by the Covid-induced lack of sales in the past eight months, is hosting 2021 ACMA-Automechanika New Delhi from April 22-25. The aftermarket trade fair will re-unite auto component makers under a secure b2b environment, where they can explore innovations for the ‘new normal’ and engage in invaluable business exchange.

Hybrid exhibition
For the upcoming edition of the trade fair, organisers Messe Frankfurt India and Automotive Component Manufacturers Association (ACMA) are also looking into the hybrid exhibition model. While digital integration can enable a broader reach, physical exhibition will continue to provide a stronger environment for collaboration in the aftermarket segment.

Highlighting the importance of deep localisation in strengthening the Indian aftermarket industry, Raj Manek, executive director & Board Member, Messe Frankfurt Asia Holdings, said: “With mobility trends and consumer sentiments shifting in favour, Indian auto component makers should upscale their manufacturing capabilities to harness global demand and gain a strong hold in Asian aftermarkets. Deep localisation of supply chain in conjunction with government’s initiative for ‘Aatmanirbhar Bharat’ will also be a key prospect, as it will help the Indian aftermarket industry emerge more resilient and strongly independent in the long run.”

Vinnie Mehta, director general, ACMA, commented: “There are lot of challenges ahead, especially as we are not yet out of the pandemic; local lockdowns accompanied with logistics issues continue to pose a challenge for the industry. Going forward, a stable policy and regulatory regime, with a singular benign GST rate for the auto component industry among others would provide a fillip to the sector.”

“With emphasis on ‘Atmanirbharta’ by the Government, the automotive industry in India is focusing on deep localisation which would not only make the industry globally competitive but also add to the benefit of the consumers by making available products of superior quality at affordable price points,” added Mehta.

Currently, the auto-components industry accounts for 2.3 percent of India’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP) and employs around 5 million people directly and indirectly. As auto component manufacturers look for a stronger approach, localising manufacturing operations, adopting omni-channel models and focusing on collaboration would greatly help in regaining momentum in the market.