Corrected: INTERVIEW: Covestro doubles PC compounding capacity at India facility
Correction: In the ICIS story headlined “INTERVIEW: Covestro doubles PC compounding capacity at India facility”, dated 14 March 2022, an erroneous line on Indian PC market size was deleted. A corrected story follows.
MUMBAI (ICIS)–India’s arm of German firm Covestro has doubled the polycarbonate (PC) compounding capacity at its Greater Noida facility, which will help it take advantage of the increasing demand in the country’s electronic and automotive market, a senior company official said on Monday.
“This is the first large-sized project in India since 2015. With the installation of the two new lines, the capacity more than doubled for polycarbonate compounding at the Indian plant,” said Anand Srinivasan, Managing Director at Covestro India.
Covestro caters to nearly 45% of the Indian polycarbonate market demand which currently stands at around 200,000 tonnes/year, Srinivasan said while declining to provide capacity details of the unit at Greater Noida in northern Uttar Pradesh state.
As the market for final applications of polycarbonates is mainly located in north India which has a high concentration of original equipment manufacturers, Covestro decided to expand capacity at its Greater Noida facility instead of setting up a new greenfield plant, he added.
The increased capacity at the plant, which is currently operating at full capacity, will allow the company to support the Indian government’s ‘Make in India’ initiative, Srinivasan said.
Increased downstream demand from the automotive, electronics, and healthcare industries will help boost the market for polycarbonate sheets and films, Srinivasan said.
Covestro expects to see augmented demand from the Indian automotive industry, especially the hybrid and electric vehicle segment, which is one the largest consumers of PC products, he said.
Policy interventions by the Indian government through the National Electric Mobility Mission Plan (NEMMP) 2020 and Faster Adoption and Manufacturing of (Hybrid &) Electric Vehicles in India (FAME I and II), are expected to speed up the growth of the Indian hybrid and electric vehicle market.
Launched in 2013, the NEMMP 2020 provides a roadmap for the faster adoption of electric and hybrid vehicles in India. The FAME schemes provide subsidies and other incentives to promote the production and sale of hybrid and electric vehicles in the country.
Various Indian states have now launched policies that support local manufacturing, research and development (R&D), and infrastructure development in the field, Srinivasan said, adding, “we expect the growth trend to continue in the near to medium term due to sustained expansion in consumer industries.”
Currently, 16 of India’s 28 states have dedicated electric vehicle policies that promote the adoption of electric vehicles.
In 2021, 233,971 electric two wheelers were sold in India representing a two-fold increase over the 100,736 units sold in 2020, as per data from industry body, Society of Manufacturers of Electric Vehicles (SMEV).
Covestro expects to meet the Indian demand for PC products for the next five years from its Greater Noida facility and does not have any plans to expand operations at its other production sites in India, Srinivasan said.
“We may undertake a further capacity expansion five years down the line, depending on the demand,” he added.
Covestro, which manufactures high-tech polymer materials, operates four facilities in India and supplies its products to Sri Lanka, Nepal and Bangladesh in addition to the Indian markets.
Interview article by Priya Jestin
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