Automation industry is in an evolving phase. There are many factors which are considerably changing the outlook of the industry such as ever-increasing need of complying to global standards, the constant need for improving operational excellence, desire for zero defects, productivity and quality improvement, etc. This is further supplemented by certain macroeconomic factors which are poised to bring a positive effect on manufacturing (the key target area for industrial automation) such as the rising disposable incomes of the populace, expanding middle-class, rise in rural demand, urbanisation, and structured and focused initiatives like Make in India.
Efforts are being enhanced to achieve the ambitious target of making manufacturing contribute 25 percent of GDP and create 100 million jobs by 2022. All these would surely help automation to grow further in India. As of now, the industrial automation market in India is expected to have a CAGR of 10-12 percent over a period during 2015-2020.
One of the key opportunities which everyone is perceiving is the contribution of Make in India initiative to the manufacturing sector. Indian manufacturers can only make the most of 'Make in India' by establishing manufacturing facilities which are world class. It is imperative to attain global standards to cater to the Indian and global market effectively. For this, the manufacturers need to invest more in terms of automation and the latest equipment and technologies.
Apart from this, looking at the ever changing dynamics of the technology world, Industry 4.0 and Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) - which are gradually making inroads - could emerge as the game changer for Indian manufacturing. They can enable manufacturers to improve their productivity and quality manifold. Thus, helping them leapfrog the automation investment phase because many of the Indian manufacturing companies have not yet invested extensively in the traditional automation. So now they can make a smarter investment by adopting IIoT technologies.
Sameer Gandhi, MD, Omron Automation, India
IIoT is actually a melange of many futuristic and advanced concepts and technologies which have the potential of transforming the production scenario in the 21st century mainly comprising of a ‘connected shopfloor’ where data is collected from various sensors and other input devices to be used for predictive maintenance, better control and long term analysis.
Regarding the budget, one of my key suggestions is to set up a fund to incentivise the automation absorption especially for the SME’s in the manufacturing industry. Automation is a quality and efficiency enhancer. It can help make industry produce world-class products at productivity and cost levels that are at par with global standards. Hence, incentivising automation in manufacturing industries would be a boost for Make in India.
Sameer Gandhi is the managing director of Omron Automation, India