In­dus­try urged to make sus­tain­able plas­tics for in­fra­struc­ture

FICCI Business Digest - - News -

Suresh Prab­hakar Prabhu, Min­is­ter for Rail­ways, Gov­ern­ment of India, un­der­lined the need for de­vel­op­ing sus­tain­able in­fra­struc­ture and cre­at­ing op­por­tu­ni­ties for mov­ing to the next level of a sus­tain­able par­a­digm. The ef­fort should be to grow while pre­serv­ing the frag­ile en­vi­ron­ment. In­dus­try should try and make sus­tain­able plas­tics for de­vel­op­ing in­fra­struc­ture.

Prabhu was ad­dress­ing the third Na­tional Con­fer­ence on Plas­tic Pro­cess­ing fo­cus­ing on 'Sus­tain­able In­fra­struc­ture with Plas­tics' or­ga­nized by FICCI jointly with the Depart­ment of Chem­i­cals & Petro­chem­i­cals, Gov­ern­ment of India and Or­ga­ni­za­tion of Plas­tics Pro­ces­sors of India (OPPI) in New Delhi on Fe­bru­ary 23, 2017.

Ear­lier, in his pre­sen­ta­tion, Charu Kapoor, Prin­ci­pal – Chem­i­cals, TSMG, said that de­spite hav­ing a good growth po­ten­tial, the plas­tic pro­cess­ing in­dus­try faces many chal­lenges in terms of en­vi­ron­men­tal myths, lack of ad­vanced tech­nol­ogy, lim­ited in­fra­struc­ture and high volatil­ity in feed­stock prices. To over­come these chal­lenges, sig­nif­i­cant ef­forts will have to be made by all the stake­hold­ers to re­al­ize the real po­ten­tial of this in­dus­try.

Mukesh Mal­ho­tra, Co-Chair­man, FICCI Chem­i­cal in­dus­try Cte & Coun­try Man­ager, Solvay Specilaities, said that plas­tics will play a ma­jor role in three ar­eas – en­ergy ef­fi­ciency, pro­tec­tion & safety and re­source ef­fi­ciency. With a bur­geon­ing pop­u­la­tion, ef­fi­cient use of plas­tics can help in rais­ing stan­dards of liv­ing. How­ever, there was a per­cep­tion that plas­tics and chem­i­cals were bad prod­ucts. This needed to be cor­rected for en­cour­ag­ing the wide­spread use of plas­tics.

Achal Thakkar, Pres­i­dent, OPPI & Man­ag­ing Di­rec­tor, TIPCO In­dus­tries Ltd., said that the ben­e­fits of plas­tics in in­fra­struc­ture were well-known but there were three sec­tors – trans­porta­tion, agri­cul­ture and clean air, wa­ter and en­ergy – where plas­tics could play a fun­da­men­tally sig­nif­i­cant role. For in­stance, ef­fec­tive use of plas­tics in rail­ways can con­sid­er­ably al­ter the economies of scale re­sult­ing in en­ergy ef­fi­ciency.

Prof. Anil Wali, Man­ag­ing Di­rec­tor, Foun­da­tion for In­no­va­tion and Tech­nol­ogy Trans­fer, In­dian In­sti­tute of

Tech­nol­ogy Delhi, said that in­dus­try-academia part­ner­ship was the key to drive in­no­va­tion in this sec­tor. He em­pha­sized that an open in­no­va­tive par­a­digm was needed where in­dus­try could en­gage with re­search chan­nels and academia. The academia's novel ideas could be scaled up by the in­dus­try to de­velop sus­tain­able prod­ucts.

Speak­ing on the use of PVCs, Ravi Ahuja, GM-Mar­ket­ing, Chemplast San­mar Ltd., said that the gov­ern­ment was fo­cus­ing on in­fra­struc­ture de­vel­op­ment and smart ci­ties which would boost the de­mand for PVC. How­ever, he pointed out that to meet the present de­mand, PVC was be­ing im­ported and with in­creased de­mand in the years to come, it was es­sen­tial to aug­ment the do­mes­tic sup­ply.

S B Dan­gay­ach, Man­ag­ing Di­rec­tor, Sin­tex In­dus­tries Ltd., said that as plas­tics were non-biodegrad­able, they be­come a choice for sus­tain­able growth. But there was a need to carry out in­no­va­tion in this sec­tor, pro­mote value-based mar­ket­ing and go for so­lu­tion-cen­tric ap­proach. Greater use of plas­tics in the con­struc­tion of road, rail­way coaches and in­fra­struc­ture and scal­ing up of ex­ist­ing work could lead to sus­tain­able de­vel­op­ment.

Dr. An­na­purna Vanch­eswaran, Se­nior Di­rec­tor – Sus­tain­able De­vel­op­ment Out­reach, The En­ergy and Re­sources In­sti­tute, said that the ap­pli­ca­tion of plas­tics would in­crease in fu­ture. There­fore, there was a need for a be­hav­ioral change in peo­ple to­wards plas­tics and the in­dus­try needs to look for ways to use plas­tics sus­tain­ably as we move into the plas­tic-age.

The ses­sion was chaired by Prabh Das, Chair­man, FICCI Na­tional Petro­chem­i­cal Com­mit­tee, MD & CEO – HPCL – Mit­tal En­ergy Lim­ited.

Dig­ni­taries re­leas­ing the FICCI-Tata Strate­gic Man­age­ment Group Knowl­edge Pa­per on Plas­tic In­dus­try for In­fra­struc­ture.

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