Bike expo ends on a vroom note

HT Ludhiana Live - - Front Page - Deepak Beri ludlivedesk@hin­dus­tan­times.com

LUD­HI­ANA: A large num­ber of peo­ple vis­ited the bike expo, which ended on Sun­day evening. The bike in­dus­try was sat­is­fied with the re­sponse.

A large num­ber of traders from across the coun­try vis­ited the expo in the last three days. Most of the ma­jor cy­cle man­u­fac­tur­ers launched their hi-tech mod­els at the expo, and said the re­sponse from vis­i­tors was en­cour­ag­ing. Fol­low­ing the suc­cess at the expo, they are plan­ning to tar­get the in­ter­na­tional mar­ket of high- end cy­cles and com­pete with China.

“The way peo­ple have re­sponded to the expo, spe­cially to the high-end cy­cles is en­cour­ag­ing,” RD Sharma, chair­man of Hi- Bird Cy­cles, said. “We have a huge do­mes­tic mar­ket for these cy­cles. There is a also a huge in­ter­na­tional mar­ket for these cy­cles, which we can hope to tar­get if we im­prove our tech­nol­ogy.”

Ac­cord­ing to Sharma, ex­ports of cy­cle from In­dia to Euro­pean coun­tries were quite low and there was a huge scope for in­crease.

“Euro­pean coun­tries had im­posed 48% anti-dump­ing duty on China 10 years ago and now this duty has been ex­tended by an­other five years,” Sharma said. “A part of the Euro­pean cy­cle mar­kets now rely on ex­ports from Tai­wan and Bangladesh.” “Coun­tries like Bangladesh are im­port­ing from China and then ex­port­ing to Euro­pean coun­tries, mak­ing the cy­cles costlier,” Sharma said. “So, now we can tar­get a huge in­ter­na­tional mar­ket. It all de­pends on how fast we can up­grade our tech­nol­ogy.”

“A new cus­tomer base is emerg­ing,” Ra­jesh Kapoor, di­rec­tor of SK Bikes, said. “This base con­sists of the mid­dle class and higher class, who con­sider cy­cles as health equip­ment rather than means of con­veyance. To cater to this new base, we must have gov­ern­ment sup­port.

Kapoor said the gov­ern­ment should ex­empt ex­cise duty and VAT re­fund should be made faster. “This re­fund could be used for mod­erni­sa­tion,” he added.

In­dus­try heads feel that a per­son who can af­ford a mo­bile phone of 7,000 to 10,000 can be per­suaded to spend the same amount on cy­cles, with­out com- promis­ing on qual­ity.

“We have al­ready de­cided the dates for next year’s expo which will start on Fe­bru­ary 22,” Gur­preet Singh Ku­lar, the pres­i­dent of United Cy­cles And Parts Man­u­fac­tur­ers As­so­ci­a­tion said. “The num­ber of stalls is ex­pected to in­crease up to 300.”

We have a huge do­mes­tic mar­ket for high-end cy­cles.

There is a also a huge in­ter­na­tional mar­ket, which we can hope to tar­get if we im­prove our tech­nol­ogy

RD SHARMA chair­man of Hi-bird Cy­cles

GAU­RAV BA­JAJ/HT

Chil­dren pos­ing on bikes on the last day of Bi­cy­cle Expo in Lud­hi­ana on Sun­day.

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