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Monday, Feb 02, 2004

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SIEMA to provide latest tech to motor, pump makers

R.Y. Narayanan

While SMEs have been able to achieve higher standards with respect to motors, in the pump segment there are areas that need refinement.

Coimbatore , Feb. 1

IN an effort to make available cutting edge technology to the motor and pump manufacturing units in the Coimbatore region, the Southern India Engineering Manufacturers' Association (SIEMA) has planned to adopt a cluster development approach involving an investment of Rs 19 crore.

While 75 per cent of the expenditure under this project will come from the Centre as grant once the project is cleared by it, the rest would be met by the organisation.

Speaking to Business Line, Mr G. Rajendran, President, SIEMA, said that technology development has been a critical area for the SMEs in the region in improving their global competitiveness.

While they have been able to achieve higher standards with respect to motors, in the pump segment there are certain areas that need further refinement.

Two focus areas to meet the global requirements are the use of engineering plastics to make pump components lighter and more energy efficient and manufacture of stainless steel pumps to cater to the export markets.

But the SMEs were not able to invest in developing their own dies and moulds and SIEMA has sought to meet their needs through the cluster approach.

Mr Rajendran said that the project proposal envisages the formation of a `Die and Mould Development Centre' for developing press tools and moulds for the pump components, testing centre to test quality of raw materials and finished products and establishment of a business centre in SIEMA's premises with audio/video facilities for holding conferences, etc.

An allotment of Rs 1.5 crore for procuring technical knowhow from both within and outside India has been provided under the cluster programme.

Mr Rajendran said that the project proposals have been submitted to both the State and the Central Governments and expected the Centre to communicate its decision in a month. Once the approval is received, the project would be completed in a year.

The SIEMA President said that the global market demand for pumps and motors was about Rs 1.25 lakh crore annually and the Indian market size was just about Rs 2,500 crore.

The share of Coimbatore units in the domestic market was about Rs 1,200 crore, and nearly 50 per cent of it was accounted for by a handful of big producers. Some 500 SMEs have a turnover of Rs 400 crore.

The share of export of pumps and motors by the Coimbatore units works out to just about Rs 30 crore a year out of the total export of around Rs 400 crore.

Once the cluster project is completed, the contribution of the Coimbatore pump and motor industry is expected to go up to Rs 700 crore in the export market and to Rs 1,500 crore in the domestic market by 2008.

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