Hamburg Messe und Congress GmbH (HMC) is systematically pursuing its strategy of internationalising the flagship fair SMM, the world’s premier shipbuilding exhibition, with the launch of the SMM India from 2009 onwards. That is the second SMM event abroad, following the successful introduction of the SMM Istanbul (21 to 23 January 2009).
The first SMM India will be held at the Bombay Exhibition Centre in Mumbai from 28 to 30 October 2009. The new shipbuilding fair is accompanied by a high-calibre conference.
“Our aim at SMM India is to give our customers from the shipbuilding and marine equipment industry concentrated access to the Indian market,” says Bernd Aufderheide, Chairman of the Management Board of HMC, explaining the brand extension of the SMM, “and at the same time it is to give regionally active Indian companies easier access to the global market for shipbuilding and marine technologies”.
Exhibitors there can expect the familiar standard of SMM expertise. Many of the SMM exhibitors are already active in India, but the SMM India gives them even better opportunities there, not least due to the in-depth market knowledge of the Indian organising partner. Hauke V. Schlegel, Managing Director of the VDMA Working Group of the Shipbuilding and Offshore Equipment Supply Industry, gives a positive assessment: “That means strong growth in business opportunities for German and European high-tech suppliers in the marine equipment industry. The industry welcomes the opportunity to exhibit at this high-quality fair, under the strong brand name SMM, and intends to use it to build and secure its market position in India.”
The decision by HMC to establish a shipbuilding fair in SMM quality on the Indian subcontinent is a logical step motivated by the dynamism of this economic area. India, together with China, is the driving force of the Asian economy. The Indian economy has enjoyed almost double-digit growth rates for many years. GDP was up 8.8% in fiscal year 2007/2008, which ended in March 2008, following GDP growth of 9.4% in the previous year. The OECD forecasts growth of 8.6% and 8.4% in the next two years. Bank experts estimate that, as early as 2020, India could be the fastest growing economy, ahead even of China.
With a packed order book of 220 newbuildings India is amongst the Top Ten global shipbuilders, according to Prof. Dr. Martin Stopford of Clarkson Research. The Indian shipbuilding industry
is characterised by the same rapid growth rate, accelerating sharply in the wake of the global shipbuilding boom. It currently comprises about 32 shipyards, including the leading state shipyards Hindustan Shipyard, Cochin Shipyard and Alcock Ashdown, and also fast growing private-sector builders such as Pipavav Shipyard. The private sector is currently in the process of overtaking the state-run shipbuilding companies.
What a meteoric rise! India was still at the back of the field at the end of 2007 in terms of ship completions, but by May 2008 she had moved up to 8th position among the Top Ten global shipyards, with a packed order book for 220 newbuildings, a total of 2 million CGT – that is the picture shown by statistics of British consultant Clarkson Research. And there is more to come – a study by Indian management consultant i-maritime forecasts that India’s market share will rise from about 1.1% today to 5% by 2015.
India’s government and shipbuilding industry are spending a lot of money to achieve these targets. Investments of some $4.3 billion are expected from India’s private-sector shipyards, expanding and modernising their capacity in the next five years, from the current level of 900,000 DWT to 2.5 million DWT per annum. The Ministry of Shipping, which operates four shipyards, plans to put a total of $1.18 billion into this expansion by 2017. According to estimates by the Shipyards Association of India, all private-sector and state-run shipyards taken together will invest a total of $5.54 billion in modernisation and capacity increase by 2012.
“The SMM India and HMC with our flagship brand SMM will benefit from the dynamic growth of the Indian shipbuilding industry,” says Bernd Aufderheide.
To give new impetus to the SMM India project, a delegation of the Indian shipbuilding industry will hold intensive discussions during the SMM 2008 in Hamburg from 23 to 26 September this year. A month later, representatives of the European marine equipment suppliers will return the visit with their participation in the Port & Ship International India 2008.