Meeting EN 124 certification could help India leap ahead in exports of sanitary castings: EEPC
Kolkata/IBNS: Former Engineering Export Promotion Council (EEPC) Chairman Ravi Sehgal has said that meeting the EN124 standard that is designed to ensure the safety, compatibility, and consistency of sanitary castings will help promote the export of cast iron, ductile iron and sanitary castings.
Complying with high-quality standards for sanitary castings could help India leap ahead in exports of these key items of which the South Asian country is a major producer alongside China, said Sehgal, who is also the Convener of Panel 21.
Products designed to EN 124 standard are grouped and classified depending on their place of installation.
"The quality of a product is very important for both the producer and the buyer. The buyer has always been concerned about whether he is getting the desired quality of goods. And the trader's effort is to address this concern of the buyer," said Sehgal.
Product standards have been given high priority because of their growing importance in international trade and there is a growing need in respect of third party certification.
Casting is exported to over 189 countries. In the year 2020-2021 (Apr - Nov), India exported castings worth US$ 933 million.
The EU is the second-largest destination for Indian exports after the US.
Anupam Shah, Chairman, Committee on Technology Centre, R&D & TUFS, said: "There are approx. 4,600 Foundries in India out of which 90 per cent are MSMEs. Only one-third of our foundries are having International Quality Accreditations. As we have a mixed bag of foundries, initially, buyers have doubts as to whether the component they are sourcing has the right material, giving the right functional performance and whether they can rely on the manufacturers for the right quality, on-time delivery and process capabilities to ensure consistent quality."
Speaking at the webinar titled 'Achieving export excellence by adhering to BS EN 124 Standard with regard to Sanitary casting of Grey iron and Ductile iron' Shah said the biggest challenge is to understand the end usage of any product, the way we produce, machine, inspect and transport the parts vis-a-vis the quality checks performed by buyers.
The webinar primarily focussed on standards pertaining to sanitary castings and access covers with different end uses in vehicular and pedestrian areas made up of cast iron, aluminium alloys, steel-reinforced concrete and composite materials including plastics.
Industry veteran and senior certification consultant Tilak Sen shared important inputs on EN 124 standards, product categories covered and importance of product standardization while participating in the webinar.
“Establishment of quality systems by industries in developing countries has become absolutely essential if they are to gain a significant share of European and North American markets," said Sen