ELCINA spearheads initiative to upgrade brownfield clusters

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Manufacturers of Noida and Greater Noida have demanded a tool room, a training centre and a testing lab, which will immensely help the manufacturers of electronics

By Srabani Sen

Tuesday, July 10, 2012: In alignment with the National Electronics Policy 2011, which aims to provide assistance in upgrading brownfield clusters, ELCINA Electronics Industries Association of India recently organised a meeting of electronics manufacturers from Noida and Greater Noida. The purpose was to discuss infrastructure support to brownfield (existing) clusters in these two regions.

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Initiating the discussion, Dr Ajay Kumar, joint secretary, Department of Electronics and Information Technology (DietY) said that while the government is making an effort to set up 200 greenfield clusters across India, the clusters that already exist need dire attention, in terms of further development and upgradation. This meeting was, in fact, the result of Dr Ajay Kumar’s enthusiasm and encouragement.

Common agenda

At the meeting, which included DietY and ELCINA officials, as well as the manufacturers of Noida and Greater Noida, it was agreed that a tool room, a training centre and a testing lab would be immensely helpful to the manufacturers of Noida and Greater Noida. It was also decided that ELCINA would conduct a survey and identify interested companies that would like to invest in these ventures. BS Sethia, managing director, Elin Electronics Ltd, suggested that interested companies should be given good incentives to lure them to invest in these projects. However, Pradeep Kumar Agarwal, managing director, Digitech Industries Pvt Ltd, said that DietY should hire a consultant to do this survey and suggest ways to develop these facilities.

Dr Ajay Kumar said that while the role of the government would be that of a facilitator, ElCINA and its members should set up a special purpose vehicle (SPV) to manage the facilities. “Who should be the owners of these facilities? What should be the common denominators? And what should the beneficiaries contribute to this initiative, are some of the most important issues that need to be resolved first,” says Dr Ajay Kumar.

Common facilities required

Dr Ajay Kumar and SK Marwah, additional director/scientist ‘E’, DietY, gave a patient hearing to the participants who shared the problems being faced at Noida and Greater Noida. Vinod Sharma, managing director, Deki Electronics Ltd, said that if they all worked together, solutions could easily be found for these problems.

Rajoo Goel, secretary general, ELCINA, pointed out some other facilities that could be developed for the brownfield clusters. These include a calibration facility, warehousing facilities, better postage and courier facilities, logistics and freight forwarding, banking and insurance, apart from other common support systems.

Amrit Manwani, chairman, Sahasra Group of Companies, pointed out that a skill development centre was essential as the manufacturers face a shortage of skilled hands for electronics manufacturing. The manufacturers who participated in the meeting suggested that companies could share the cost of common infrastructure like power.

Ajay Goel, CEO, Goldwyn, stressed on the fact that a common LED testing lab ought to be set up. “If the government can fund this, the cost will go down,” added Rajoo Goel.

Amrit Manwani pointed out that since no warehouse existed in Noida or in Delhi, procuring components take a lot of time. “Since it requires a huge investment, some companies that tried to set up warehouses failed in their endeavours,” he added.

The popular decision to set up a tool room, training centre and testing lab now needs to be taken to the next level. It remains to be seen how ELCINA takes it forward, and how the companies that will benefit from these facilities support ELCINA in making this happen.

Electronics Bazaar, South Asia’s No.1 Electronics B2B magazine

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