ECTS Symposium in Agartala-India
This visit to Agartala was the sixth visit of an ECTS delegation to India in a row. Four companies from different parts of Europe, from Germany, Spain and Netherlands presented technical solutions for production of high-quality bricks and tiles to the local industry.
The symposium received participation of over 60 brick and tile manufacturers not only from Tripura but also from Assam, Bengal and other neighboring states in north eastern India, even from Dhaka, Bangladesh.
The Heavy Clay industry in India offers a big market. It is estimated that 200 billion bricks are manufactured every year. The estimated market size of the brick industry is Euro 17.5 billion. Indian brick industry mainly produces solid bricks, which has the potential to be replaced by more resource efficient bricks such as perforated bricks, hollow blocks and fly-ash bricks.
The challenges which the Indian brick and tile manufacturers are facing are manifold. Environmental issues and the strict stand of the government against the depletion of top soil are major concerns. Another factor affecting the industry is the increasing cost of labour.
The symposium started off with a welcome address from Mr. Ajmal Fawad, Deputy Manager, VDMA India followed by the special address by Mr. Miquel Moix, Chairman, ECTS. The Chief Guest, Mr. Partha Sarathi, Dutta, Vice President, Tripura Brick Manufacturers Association discussed the challenges faced by the industry in the region. Then the Guest of Honour, Mr. Ashoke Tewari, President, Bengal Brickfield Owners’ Association addressed the audience and highlighted about the importance of mechanization in the industry. The special guest, Dr. B. N. Dulal, Secretary General, Bangladesh Auto Bricks Manufacturers’ Association, pointed out the problems and challenges faced by the local brick makers in Bangladesh. Later Mr. Anand Damle, De Boer Machines, in his keynote address welcomed the local brick manufacturers and explained the importance of mechanization in the current challenges faced by the local brick makers in Tripura.
The programme was divided into 4 presentations on different topics made by the respective participating companies. The companies along with the topics of their presentations are as follows:
- Beralmar Technologic, Spain: Solution for drying and firing – European way for Indian industry
- De Boer Machines, Netherlands/De Boer Damle India Ltd.: Helping Indian brick makers manufacture resource efficient solid bricks
- Refratechnik, Germany: Refractory systems for progressive and economical brick firing
- Verdes, Spain: Modern brick making in northern India
During the breaks the interested brick makers had sufficient opportunity to interact with the ECTS members. The symposium concluded with a B2B session which provided a good interaction and networking opportunity for both the members and speakers at the event.