The recently concluded IMME 2016 reflected optimism among the exhibitors and visitors of a possible turnaround of Indian mining industry in the near future. A special report.
The 13th International Mining and Machinery Exhibition 2016 (IMME 2016) held during November 16-19 concluded with a positive note on a possible turnaround of Indian mining industry in the coming years. The 13th Global Mining Summit (GMS) 2016 also held concurrently with the IMME 2016. Organised by the Confederation of Indian Industry (CII), in association with the Ministry of Mines and Coal India Ltd, the international mining machinery event witnessed participation from about 300 exhibitors including eight country pavilions.
Gracing the inauguration of IMME and GMS were Balvinder Kumar, Secretary, Union Ministry of Mines, and the West Bengal Finance and Commerce & Industry Minister Dr Amit Mitra; along with the top officials from mining PSUs like Coal India Ltd, NMDC, BEML; Officials from the state mining departments from Odisha, Jharkhand and West Bengal; private mining majors like Vedanta; and other major mining contractors and mining machinery manufacturers.
The exhibition was held at the new venue of Eco Park in New Town with participation from around 300 exhibitors spreading 6,000 sq m of display area. The four-day exhibition and 2-day summit explored the various aspects of technologies and practices in the Indian mining industry.
The IMME 2016 saw participation of the large cross section of mining equipment manufacturers and dealers, solution providers, mining contractors and mining PSUs. The machinery and solutions were showcased in four indoor areas and outdoor space. Major companies participated from the mining equipment manufacturers included, Caterpillar, L&T-Komatsu, Joy Global, Sandvik, Atlas Copco, Tata Hitachi, BEML, Liebherr, Mahindra, JCB, ThyssenKrupp, BKT and more. Many of them have showcased new products and technologies for mining applications. While major mining PSUs such as Coal India and private miners including Vedanta actively participated in the expo.
The major attraction at Tata Hitachi´s outdoor stall was its latest shovel variant ZAXIS470. The company also showcased hydraulic excavators: EX1200V, ZX870H, ZX650, ZX470H (backhoe) and the wheel loader ZW220. Caterpillar presented the Cat773E and 777E off-highway trucks. In addition to the 97.98-tonne-capacity new Cat 777E on display, the over 300-sq-m exhibit had video displays and showcase of its Smart Iron technologies.
BEML focused on presenting its higher capacity dumpers, dozers and excavators in its indoor stall. A major attraction at the IMME 2016 was SANY India´s foray into the mining sector. The company displayed its SRT55D dump truck along with its excavator range. The leading OTR tyre manufacturer BKT showcased its latest range of 100 metric tonne rigid dump truck tyre, along with its other ranges. Dozco (India) largely focused on Make in India products and launched a new tower light manufactured in-house. LeeBoy displayed its interesting piece of innovation, the 528-D crawler mounted drill, which the company has fully designed and developed in-house. The UK-based Ampcontrol launched the new and improved AUK1000 that offers advanced safety, productivity and maintenance features in a durable flameproof enclosure.
From a rental perspective, HS Bhattacharjya, Managing Director, Quippo Construction Equipment Ltd, said, ´We regularly participate at exhibitions like IMME and it is our endeavour to be present in all exhibitions, conferences and forums associated with infrastructure development. Quippo is present in construction and mining equipment rental arena for more than a decade and our Group has strong presence in this sector for more than 25 years. We feel that rental and leasing will be need of the hour. Therefore our presence here is very important.´
There was a good number of participation from foreign companies with eight country pavillions from Australia, China, Germany, Czech Republic, Poland, Russia and the UK. Apart from the country pavilions, there were participations from Belarus, Belgium, Finland, Indonesia, Italy, Spain and the US. Commenting on the German participation, Rajesh Nath, Managing Director, VDMA India Services Pvt Ltd, said, ´There is more number of German companies participated this time, almost 20 companies participating this time at IMME. I am sure the German companies are quite happy as of now. Also there are a few German companies participated for the first time which is a good sign that they are also interested in Indian market.´According to him, there is a great scope for the development of coal mining industry in India. Also there is a plan to increase steel production which requires more iron ore. ´So overall, there is a scope and potential for Indian mining market. That is why we see a lot of foreign exhibitors and suppliers here looking at the potential of the Indian market,´ he added.
From the UK, 16 companies took part in the IMME expo. The four-day event provided an excellent opportunity for the participating UK companies to showcase their products and service excellence to a large number of visitors.
Making the Debutants
There were many first-time exhibitors also this time to have the first-hand experience of the Indian mining industry. Most of the participants were happy and satisfied with their foray. There were a few German companies participated for the first time. The Belgian exhibitor NLMK Europe participated for the first time in IMME. Bernard Robins, Marketing Manager, NLMK Europe - Plate, said,´We know that India is a special market, and we have a lot to offer to this market and do here.´ According to Anil Sharma, Regional Manager-OTR, South Asia and MEA, Aeolus Tyre Co Ltd, ´We are new to Indian market in terms of OTR and earthmoving industry. Our major aim of participating in IMME was to make our presence felt in the industry. We wanted to tell the market that there is another choice available through our range of products.´
Bharat Wire Ropes Ltd participated for the first time in IMME with an aim to have a better exposure in the mining industry. MS Arora, CEO, Bharat Wire Ropes Ltd, said, ´We are participating for the first time in IMME. The footfall of visitors is satisfactory. With this participation, we look forward to have a much more exposure than we had in the past.´ Ultra Plus Lubes Pvt Ltd is a two-year old company participated for the first time in IMME. Siddesh N Savant, Director - Business Development, Ultra Plus Lubes Pvt Ltd, is quite satisfied with the decision to participate in the expo as he received a good number of positive enquiries in the first day itself. ´We have received good number of visitors and overall it was encouraging,´ he said.
The number of exhibitors this time was less compared to the previous edition of IMME. However, the overall mood of the exhibitors was positive as the current slowdown in the mining industry is the major reason for the reduced number of exhibitors. However, the visitors turnout was encouraging for most of the exhibitors. They say that the turnaround of the industry is now around the corner and probably during the next IMME, there can be a possibly a complete turnaround in the industry. Kiyoshi Mizuhara, Managing Director, Komatsu India Pvt Ltd, underlines this by saying, ´We expect a good growth prospect for Indian mining industry in the medium term.´ Ranjit Ravindran, Business Head - Mining Machinery, Mining & Construction Equipment Division, Voltas Ltd, is of the view that, the tempo of the equipment manufacturers is a bit low now, but everybody is gearing up in this downturn. He adds, ´Yes, the return of the cycle has started and hopefully the next IMME can be more aggressive and have more footfalls.´
With the Indian mining industry is poised towards growth, the next edition of IMME is expected be a promising one.