Injection Moulding Asia Machinery News
Steady demand to accelerate growth In a reality check, analysts are lowering their expectations on China’s rebound for post-crisis recovery, settling instead for a slower growth rate. The steady demand in the machinery sector, a backbone of the country’s economy, may just accelerate the growth rate. But local companies interviewed at the Chinaplas show in Guangzhou in May expect recovery to be aided by export markets while international firms expect the demand for high-tech machines in the country to push their sales.
Targeting the export markets he recent Chinaplas show conjures an actual, albeit, microcosmic arena for the country’s machinery industry. Machinery manufacturer China Haitai Plastic Machinery says that China will remain the world’s largest injection moulding machine production and consumption market for a long period of time. Noting that Russia is an emerging market, a spokesperson said that the foreign market, in general, is growing rapidly; and Eastern Europe remained a good market “despite the lingering Eurozone crisis.” When asked about the company’s growth, he said, “We expect a 50% increase this year.” And though it has business in most of Southeast Asia, it plans to focus on strengthening its presence in Thailand and India. At the show, the firm displayed three upgraded versions of its machines: a multi-colour moulding machine, hybrid machine and a second generation precision servo energy-saving machine. Another exhibitor, Guangzhou-based Borch Machinery says it is taking advantage of the steady growth and acceptance of Chinese machinery in the Asian market, mainly in South Korea, to expand its product range. Overseas Division Manager Haiyan Ma said that the company has enhanced the quality of its machinery to compete with South Korean machine makers LS Mtron and Woojin Plaimm.
Calls for upgrading machinery standards hina’s plastic product output expanded 11.5% in the first four months of this year, two percentage points higher than the country’s overall industrial output growth, but slowed down from the 16.9% in the same period last year, according to a report from the China National Light Industry Council. The association says the plastics industry has “entered a period of reasonable growth after years of fast development.” During this period, Chinese plastic producers raked in RMB532.7 billion and the country exported RMB16.8 billion worth of plastic products, up 23% compared to last year. Meanwhile, the China Machinery Industry Federation says that structural changes are needed to trim off excess capacity, especially at the lower-end of manufacturing. However, it says that there is not enough capacity in the high-end manufacturing sector. The segment is also veering towards moving up the value chain to remain competitive both in the domestic market and internationally. And many local-based factories are producing machines for export, which are subject to quality standard compliances. German association Euromap, during the Chinaplas show, said that China-made machines that are imported to Europe do not comply with the EU standards. This observation is not just singling out China, the group stressed, but it, together with several trade associations, is batting for a more stringent inspection programme. According to the Italian plastics and rubber machinery trade group Assocomaplast, its inspection programme has found that in the last five years more than 90% of the imported machinery failed to meet safety standards. Thus, Euromap is amenable to a Europe-wide enforcement of the Italian programme since there have been reports of importers avoiding Italian ports and rerouting machinery to other countries with less stringent inspections. And once inside Europe, the machines are transported by land into Italy.
Borch’s new twoplaten machine with a higher tonnage
Ma said the company also exports its machines to Vietnam, Cambodia, Thailand, Myanmar, Malaysia, Indonesia, and the Philippines. Borch’s strategy in Southeast Asia is to “seize the main markets and develop new markets,” said Ma. But he lamented the stiff price competition. “We must make use of our brand to provide high quality products and fast service to win a bigger market share,” he said, adding that the company expects a 30% increase in turnover this year. As for the other markets, Ma said, “Machines are still in great demand in India but because of the anti-dumping duties imposed by the government, sales have come to a standstill. The situation in the European market as a whole is not very good, especially in Western Europe.” He added, “The Eastern European market has stabilised, while the Russian market has begun to pick up, but the competition is fierce and overall demand is still relatively small.” At the exhibition, Borch showcased a BU600 two-platen machine; a BH200 high-speed IML machine; a BE150 all-electric machine and an RP2190 multi-material machine. 1
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Injection Moulding Asia Machinery News said a spokesperson. He also said that the company is continuously expanding its sales in China, Hong Kong and Taiwan. “The country’s economic recovery will initiate a high requirement for high-quality machines, which we plan to increase by 100% in 2013.” Meanwhile, Germany-based Demag Plastics Machinery, which operates a facility in Ningbo, expects to start producing large tonnage machines in the country. CEO Stephan Greif said the company was considering the construction of a new plant in Ningbo to add on capabilities for machines with a tonnage of up to 2,000 tonnes. Greif said, “A new plant will also allow us to expand our capacity from the current 600 units to 1,000 units a year.” In fact, in 2007, Demag relocated to a larger factory, with a production area spanning 11,000 sq m, after having achieved complete capacity utilisation. Apart from the automotive market, where the larger machines are expected to be sold to, the company is also targeting the Chinese medical market. Greif also said that Demag, which is part of the JapaneseGerman conglomerate Sumitomo Demag, supplies complete systems to its customers, including automation equipment from French robot maker Sepro for high-end processes. “We also work closely with local robot maker Ningbo Well-Lih Robots Technology.” In the packaging field, Demag works with automation and IML systems specialist Shanghai CAMS Automation System. CAMS, which also supplies stack moulds, says that IML is still new in China. “We see a high potential for the three and four-stack moulds in the industry,” said a spokesperson. “We have the best automation systems and moulds for the food, medical, cosmetic and packaging industries,” he added. Relatively a new player, the company is planning to export in the near future to “sustain its positively growing company.”
According to the company’s Technology Innovation Centre Manager, Guanlin Liang, the BU600 machine indicates how far Borch has matured in its R&D capabilities in the twoplaten machine model, now available from sizes of 500-6,000 tonnes. The BH200 IML machine has a 4.5-second moulding speed, with significant improvements on the staibility, said Liang. “The second generation BE150 all-electric machine exhibits a highly-improved level of response speed, precision and stability than the first generation; and the RP2190 is China’s first multi-material machine,” claimed Liang. Founded in 2003, Borch has two production bases in Hangzhou and Guangzhou, spanning 150,000 sq m, and 900 employees. It also claims to have the world’s most advanced modern digital processing centre and an annual production capacity of 15,000 machines. Foreign machine makers cash in on the market S-headquartered Milacron exhibited its Elektron EE180-630 and EE350-1540 all-electric machines; and F-80 machine, which features precise, fast and “green” production procedures. The firm said that its Elektron series boasts precision, economical productivity, clean and quiet functions. “The features of the all-electric series make it a highly sought after machine for the Chinese market,”
Milacron introduced its all-electric series
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Injection Moulding Asia Machinery News
Tianjin, Changchun, Qingdao, Chengdu and Ningbo, it has plans to extend its network to the northern and western regions of the country. Debuting at this year’s exhibition was global manufacturer of speciality release agents and process chemicals Chem-Trend. It demonstrated the Lusin screw cleaning materials, mould release agents, lubricants and mould maintenance products. Said General Manager of the China operations, Sun Jun, “This year, we will focus on the Northeast and Midwest markets in China to provide customers with more convenient local sales and technical support. In addition, we are also investing in a local facility in Qingpu that will be completed early next year.” The German-made Lusin Clean G screw cleaning materials are ready to use granules that are non-abrasive, claimed Marketing Manager Coco Wang. Meanwhile, the Lusin Clean G320 is used at low consumption to quickly clean injection systems of engineering thermoplastics such as ABS, nylon, polycarbonate, PET, POM and PMMA, including a variety of alloy mixture/change resins, said Wang. She added, “It can also shorten the downtime of the cleaning process by about 80% while improving the cleaning efficiency.” Furthermore, Wang explained that Lusin Clean G315 does not contain fillers and abrasives while Clean G301 is suitable for continuous shuttle, co-extrusion, single and continuous rotation machines. German solutions provider Keba showcased KePlast, a system that is scalable in control, operator panel and I/Os. It can be applied for low and for high-end applications and on hydraulic, all-electric or hybrid machines. Keba also exhibited its KeMotion IMM Handling, a precise robot control for fast take-out handlings without vibrations. Another new product for the Chinese market is KePlast SpeedPump, which allows for improved energy-efficiency of hydraulic machines. It is a complete package consisting of a dynamic servo pump and economic electric drives that can be integrated with the KePlast system and can be connected quickly and easily to a KePlast control by use of CAN and EtherCAT fieldbus systems. Other solutions include the KePlast EasyNet 2.0k, which allows for centralised monitoring of a complete machine to help improve productivity. Benefits are that monitoring and recording as well as analysis of process parameters, quality data and productivity of machines can be done easily and assists to improve productivity, says the firm. Coordinated heat-up of the complete machinery helps to save costs by balanced energy consumption. And with a new feature called “KePlast EasyNet. Mobile”, the software can be installed on a smart phone for mobile monitoring of machines. Keba’s KePlast speed pump and drive
Shanghai CAMS provides a host of mould solutions to cater to the packaging market
One company that has started up a brand new facility in China recently is KraussMaffei Machinery. The facility in Haiyan started up in the first quarter of this year and the German firm has already delivered 36 units of the Chineseassembled MX 850-6100 machines to a long-standing Chinese customer, according to Harald Schweitzer, CEO of the Chinese operation. The 15,000 sq m facility is the company’s second in China, and is located adjacent to a similar-sized plant that manufactures extrusion and resin transfer moulding (RTM) machinery. The company displayed its SkinForm process, where moulding is combined with reaction process machinery to create high-quality PU surfaces on thermoplastic parts. It showcased this in a manufacturing cell consisting of a CX 200-750 machine with a LRX 150 linear robot and a RimStar Compact 8/8 PU mixing and metering station, with a high-pressure MK 5/8 mixing head mounted to the mould and a reworking station for separating the gate The SkinForm process made its points. debut at Chinaplas Guangzhou-based ECHOM Automotive has tied up with KraussMaffei to mass-produce SkinForm products for the Chinese market. For this purpose, a fully automated SkinForm unit, based on a GX 450-3000 machine, will be placed at ECHOM’s facility, said Schweitzer. Auxiliaries also come into play ustria-headquartered manufacturer of robots and automation systems Wittmann Group said that the Chinese market’s rapid development enabled it to achieve its growth targets, while complementing also the company’s strategic focus. Said Sophia Xu from the Marketing Department, “The current market demand for high-end devices continues to grow, which means a promising market is waiting for us.” Wittmann has provided its automation solutions to industries that have to contend with high labour costs, at the expense of productivity. These solutions, says Xu, deliver lower production costs, yet more stable quality automated production. The company has a factory in Kunshan and plans to further strengthen its R&D capabilities in the country. In addition to the existing sales and service organisations in Shanghai, Shenzhen,
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IMA June-July 2013 Machinery News