In an unprecedented move to provide potential users of every size and from across all industry sectors with unrivalled levels of technical support – and machine prove-out – Starrag China has opened a technical centre in Shanghai to serve the Swiss-based machine tool solutions provider’s ever-growing customer base throughout China.
As well as housing a number of Starrag machines that are under power to demonstrate their cost-effectiveness and production efficiencies – the new 2,200 m2 Starrag Shanghai TechCenter also offers visitors world-class applications engineering expertise coupled with superlative training for machine operators and programmers so that customers can quickly attain a seamless, integrated route to ‘Engineering precisely what you value’.
The in-situ Starrag LX 051 (for turbine blades) and NB 251 (for impellers and blisks) machines are currently complemented by the multi-axis Bumotec s191 and s181 multi-tasking machining centres – ideal for use in the luxury goods, jewellery, medical and watchmaking industries, for example – as well as a Heckert H50 machining centre which is targeted at a wide range of different parts across varying industrial sectors.
“All over the world, Starrag succeeds not only because of our high-performance machines but also due to the effectiveness of our ‘smart technology solutions’,” says Starrag China’s Managing Director, Tony Liu. “And it is no different in China where, now with the TechCenter, we have created the perfect platform on which to co-operate closely with our customers. Imparting the correct high-level machine operating and manufacturing skills is equally important to us.”
The 26th edition of the International Sheet Metal Working Technology Exhibition, EuroBLECH 2020, will take place from 27 – 30 October 2020 at the Hanover Exhibition Grounds in Germany. The show organisers, Mack Brooks Exhibitions, have now announced the expansion of exhibition space for EuroBLECH 2020 with the addition of a ninth hall for the first time in its history. This reflects a further increase in exhibition space compared to the previous event in 2018, which covered a total of 89,800 square metres.
“With the directly neighbouring hall 26, we are now able to offer additional stand space for the exhibition to meet the demand of exhibitors to display their latest machines in the various technology sectors. The additional hall will host exhibitors of joining technology, as well as surface and tool technology, which have previously been located in hall 13. The ninth hall is giving us the possibility to assign stand space to additional exhibiting companies within the entire sheet metal working technology chain represented at EuroBLECH,” said Evelyn Warwick, Exhibition Director of EuroBLECH, on behalf of the organiser Mack Brooks Exhibitions.
“The growth to a ninth exhibition hall reflects the increasing demand for stand space at the leading industry event and offers even more capacity for businesses to present their innovations to an international audience”, he continued.
Smart sheet metal working key focus for this year’s show
For EuroBLECH 2020, the main topics represent the latest industry trends, including smart sheet metal working as well as automation and digitalisation of the manufacturing chain, with the objective to increase output and efficiency. For exhibiting companies in this industry sector, it is a vital time to present their machines, systems and solutions for networked manufacturing to an international audience.
EMO Hannover 2019 closed its doors following a six-day run. From 16 to 21 September, round about 117,000 production specialists from 150 countries convened at the world’s leading tradeshow for the metalworking industry. “This EMO Hannover 2019 built on the success of our boom year in 2017,” reported EMO General Commissioner Carl Martin Welcker.
He continued: “In the context of subdued economic expectations over the past several months, the moderate decline in attendance has to be viewed as a success. We are particularly delighted at the further increase in the percentage of foreign attendees.”
The mood in the halls was positive, with many exhibitors pleasantly surprised at the high volume of visitor traffic at their stands. “EMO Hannover has once again proved solid as a rock, providing clarity for the further development of production technology, even in uncertain times,” Welcker added.
Its trademarks included a strong international character, a high caliber of visitors and exhibitors, and an amazing wealth of innovations and new products, he stressed. As the world’s leading metalworking fair, it was the “place to be”.
Mixed Mood – Investment-Readiness Bodes Well For Post-Show Business
Exhibitors with a broad customer base were satisfied with the run of the fair. In the words of Dr. Wolfgang Heuring, CEO of the Erlangen-based Motion Control Business Unit at Siemens: “The level of visitor interest at our stand this year was incredible. We are delighted at the way things have gone.” Other firms with a stronger focus on the passenger car industry seemed to be less upbeat about the situation.
“Firms are clearly more reluctant to commit themselves, given the general uncertainty over where the market is heading,” remarked Dr. Christian Lang, CEO of Liebherr-Verzahntechnik in Kempten. “But our discussions with customers at our stand have still been substantive and very promising for the future,” he added.
While some exhibitors spoke of a historic paradigm shift in the automotive industry, which still needed to be mastered, other exhibitors reported successfully negotiating business deals with automakers during the fair.
Strong Asian Presence At EMO Hannover
As the flagship fair for its sector of industry, EMO Hannover has a strong international profile. More than half of all attendees came from abroad, split almost evenly between other European countries and overseas. A 20 percent growth in attendance from overseas in comparison with the 2017 event was particularly impressive. This included a high percentage of Asian guests, who accounted for almost one third of visitors from abroad, with China, Japan, Taiwan and India heading the rankings.
“The highly international makeup of EMO visitors, particularly from Asia, resulted in a busy and extremely global atmosphere at our stand,” said Dr. Stefan Brand, CEO of Vollmer Werke in Biberach. This trend was clearly related to a higher number of Asian exhibitors at this year’s event, who encouraged their customers to visit them in Hannover. Other countries with strong representation at the event included Italy, Poland, Sweden, Russia and Turkey.
Digitalisation And Automation Gathering Momentum
“This year’s EMO once again generated fresh momentum for innovations,” reported Lothar Horn, Managing Director of Paul Horn GmbH in Tübingen. As an innovations platform for production technology, EMO is expected to chart the trends for the years ahead, and once again the mission was successful. The EMO motto “Smart technologies driving tomorrow’s production” accurately reflected the key issues facing the industry today.
“Our many discussions with customers at EMO 2019 in Hannover revealed that a focus on the holistic process chain, including digital services, creates the relevant added value for customers,” said Christian Thönes, Chairman of the Executive Board at Bielefeld-based DMG Mori AG. This feeling was shared across all exhibitor segments.
“The positive visitor response to our cloud-based simulation tools and monitoring system as an Industry 4.0 application was striking,” commented Marie-Sophie Maier-Wember, CEO of Haas Schleifmaschinen GmbH in Trossingen. And the buzzwords of IoT platforms, apps, digital twins, artificial intelligence (AI), edge and cloud computing were omnipresent at the fair.
This all served to highlight just how much has changed since the most recent event two years ago. Particularly in Hall 9, the domains of research and practice came together. This blend of research and industry attracted large visitor numbers from around the world.
“We have made many new contacts, and the ideas garnered from talking to all these people will hopefully feed into future research projects,” commented Prof. Berend Denkena, President of the Academic Association for Production Technology (WGP) and head of the Institute for Production Technology and Machine Tools (IFW). “One clear conclusion from all this is that digitalisation and automation will chart our path into the future, you can see that right here at EMO Hannover,” he added.
This year’s EMO also featured the first AI applications in the Start-up area and at the stands of the relevant trailblasing companies. Along with the strong interest in AI and machine learning, visitors’ appetite for future visions was reflected in the accompanying events and forums, where the topics included not only AI, but also additive processes, the industrial internet of things (IIoT), 5G and not least OPC UA or umati, the new standard interface between machine tools and overarching IT systems.
The standout attraction consisted of the big umati showcase, which included 110 machines from 70 international firms and partners, demonstrating for the first time that the universal interface between machines and IT systems can function across all product types. According to umati project manager Dr. Alexander Broos, “the response to umati among our partners and customers has been huge. This display at EMO has successfully launched us on the market. Our next commission on returning home is to deliver the OPC UA Companion Specification at the earliest possible date.”
EMO Hannover 2019 Opens Window To Future
“Against all expectations, we can wrap up EMO Hannover 2019 on a positive note. The fair is attractive for the entire international production technology community and has confirmed there is still demand for capital investment in the marketplace. In spite of all the political turmoil, this trade fair has revealed that industry is actively addressing the challenges of the future and is determined to make its contribution as a problem solver,” concluded EMO general commissioner Carl Martin Welcker.
Andreas Scheuer, Federal Minister of Transport and Digital Infrastructure, opens the world’s leading trade fair for metalworking
Carl Martin Welcker
Andreas Scheuer, Federal Minister of Transport and Digital Infrastructure, together with Lower Saxony’s First Minister Stephan Weil, Member of the Board of Management of Deutsche Telekom Adel Al-Saleh, Cecimo President Dr. Roland Feichtl and EMO General Commissioner Carl Martin Welcker, is opening the EMO Hannover 2019, the world’s leading trade fair. For six days, Hanover will once again become a Mecca for the international production technology industry. The theme of the event is “Smart technologies driving tomorrow’s production!” and more than 2,200 exhibitors from 48 countries are set to present their innovations for industrial production.
“Digitalisation and networking have been the subject of much discussion over the last few years, but they are now finally being implemented in the production processes,” says Carl Martin Welcker at the opening press conference in Hanover. Factories are becoming smart, machines and tools are becoming intelligent. They communicate with each other and are raising production to new quality levels. Many exhibitors are showcasing offerings for this. There are over 2,000 hits for the term “Industry 4.0” on the EMO website alone.
EMO Hannover presenting solutions to mega issues
Welcker sees major challenges and opportunities arising from the transition of the automotive industry – the sector’s largest customer. “Electrification will not happen overnight. Rather, there will still be many optimised fossil fuel-powered vehicles on the road, either with pure combustion engines or hybrid drives,” he said. The introduction of new drive technologies will undoubtedly lead to changes in individual manufacturing processes. However, the EMO General Commissioner strongly believes that highly differentiated solutions must be found to meet the highly disparate needs of cars, commercial vehicles, motorcycles, aircraft, marine engines, mobile machines and e-bikes. If we are to achieve the ambitious CO2 climate targets, it is all the more important to redouble our efforts in the search for future drive technologies, and to ensure that the best solution prevails in each case.
Researchers at FEV Consulting have calculated that fully electric vehicles will have a 19 percent share of the global market by 2030. This relates to 118 million new registrations, the overall number of which is not expected to change significantly from the 2017 figure. They also speak of a 64 percent reduction of the added value in the manufacturing process for pure electric drives, and 24 percent higher added value for plug-in hybrids.
In this scenario, any losses in production can potentially be compensated by new requirements. Improvements to the efficiency of the remaining combustion engines and transmission systems in the form of optimised surfaces, the reduction of noise emissions, protection against component wear (which is more intense in hybrids due to the switch from electric to combustion mode at high speeds) and the redesign of braking systems (required due to the high battery weights): all these factors call for new or modified production processes. In addition, there is the installation of rapid charging facilities nationwide. Complex new production systems are also needed for the manufacture of key electrical components such as batteries, traction motors and power electronics.
Sustainability is the basis of the machine tool industry’s business model
Without the use of intelligent technology, it will not ultimately be possible to achieve the ambitious climate protection targets by 2030. In any consideration of such advances, the focus is always on industrial production and thus on machine tools as ‘enablers’. There are demands for lower energy and material consumption levels, higher process efficiency coupled with higher product quality. “In fact, the tool industry is making a major contribution, because its business model is centred squarely on efficiency and waste avoidance,” points out Welcker.
The industry would not enjoy such international success if it was not capable of processing ever new materials – such as lightweight construction in the automotive industry – and of establishing more energy-efficient processes by cutting out entire processing steps, e.g. by combining a number of processes in a single machine. Industry 4.0 is currently giving rise to much talk about ‘digital twins’. These allow optimised machines, components and processes to be designed on the computer before any actual materials are used in production. Power generation, whether conventional or regenerative, ultimately requires sophisticated production technology, too. This is crucial if sustainable principles are to be adhered to in the necessary machining of large parts for wind turbines, in combined heat and power generation, or in the laser machining of solar panels. This is at the heart of what the machine tool industry stands for.
Sustainability has always been a key factor in the construction of the machine tools themselves. The machine tool industry fulfilled the EU’s requirements as part of its move towards establishing a circular (closed-loop) economy long ago: energy- and resource-efficient production, long service lives, incentives for refurbishment, updatability of control systems, second and third lives for products. This makes it an ideal example of how to implement recycling management.
Decline in German machine tool production expected in 2019
“EMO Hannover 2019 is taking place in less than ideal economic circumstances,” admits Welcker. After eight strong years for the machine tool industry, global demand for capital goods has been in decline since the fourth quarter of 2018. User demand in all regions of the world declined significantly in the first half of 2019. In the EMO host country of Germany, incoming orders also fell by more than a fifth in the first six months. Therefore VDW (German Machine Toll Builders’ Association) revised the production forecast for Germany to minus two percent.
However, a leading world trade fair such as EMO Hannover can reveal at an early stage the technologies which are likely to attract investment in the future. New offerings arising from digitalisation and the introduction of artificial intelligence, new products made possible through the extensive use of generative processes etc. will open up new dimensions of efficiency and quality in production. Companies should now be getting themselves in shape for the coming years – through strategic realignment, modernisation of production, increased process efficiency. “There are many potential approaches. The solutions will crystallise in the coming days, not least here at EMO Hannover,” says the EMO General Commissioner.
In 2018, we witnessed the rise of Southeast Asia’s manufacturing industry as the Trade War pressured manufacturers into shifting production from China to Southeast Asia. A trend that is expected to continue on in 2019 as Southeast Asia continues to develop its manufacturing capabilities and uncertainties over a US-China truce continue to loom. Through this market outlook series, eight industry leaders share their thoughts on how the regional market will grow and develop in 2019 amidst the changing economic background and the increased presence of disruptive and intelligent technologies.
Vice President, Asia-Pacific Area, MAPAL
2018 was a successful year for MAPAL and the company grew once again although growth in the Chinese market, which had previously been strong, flattened somewhat in the last quarter of 2018 due to factors such as punitive tariffs. For 2019, we have set a goal of generating a turnover of €650 million, and this will be achieved through free trade, the development of country specific expansions, the enhancement of digital capabilities and electric mobility machining capabilities.
Development Of Country Specific Expansions
For the companies under MAPAL Group in Southeast Asia, two new regional branches will be established in Indonesia where we are seeking to build a regional presence. While in the case of Malaysia, the country recently became our Southeast Asia production hub and has been equipped with a dedicated manufacturing facility. Additionally, we are actively investing in Malaysia and expansion is set to continue in Thailand too, where a new facility was established in 2017.
Enhancement Of Digital Capabilities
Digitalisation is a pressing issue globally, and in the face of increasing demands for efficient data management systems, we have identified this trend as a potential growth area. That was why we will be using 2019 to make further refinements to c-Com and to showcase the SaaS solution to interested parties as an open cloud platform for efficient data management.
MAPAL’s new tool management 4.0 is also based on c-Com. The interconnectivity that tool management 4.0 offers means that data can be provided consistently to all those involved – manufacturing, procurement, planning, tool managers and suppliers. That makes the overall process more efficient and digitalises tool management.
We also see great potential in our re-tooling service. Customers use this when they are setting up a new manufacturing facility for a part or re-tooling existing machinery to manufacture a new part, or when optimisations need to be made while production is running.
Electric Mobility Machining Capabilities
Alongside digitalisation, another significant trend at the moment is electric mobility and we have a diverse array of innovative machining solutions available for manufacturing the various parts within the different electric drives. The importance of the automotive industry is growing all the time, as is the number of vehicles being produced with electric drives.
Head of igus Asia Pacific, igus Singapore Pte Ltd
The Asia Pacific region will remain as the growth driver for us in 2019 but we may see regional differences in development. This is due to uncertainties related to tariffs and trade, Brexit discussions and regional tensions may cause some interruption on a global scale. However, in terms of long term sustainability, the opportunities in Asia far outweigh the challenges and we will continue to invest into new markets or expand existing manufacturing facilities.
Combining Digitalisation With Industrial Development
The world is changing faster than ever before, new trends are coming up and past solutions may disappear. Artificial intelligence, complete process automation, remote monitoring of machine performance, intelligent robotics and driverless vehicles are some of the trends in which we see a potential in. The clear objective for us moving forward is to concretely implement automated processes that range from online configuration to digitally supported manufacturing for all product categories. This is a difficult path to take because ready-made solutions usually cannot be bought but have to be developed individually.
Additionally, IoT continues to drive development. And igus as an early adopter, has developed the intelligent cable, energy chain and linear guide which are able to monitor their own condition during use and open up new possibilities of predictive maintenance.
Additive Manufacturing And Low Cost Robotics
Additive manufacturing would be another key trend to mention, with 3D or SLS printing being good examples of the technology. Also, low cost robotics are another trend to watch out for in 2019 and the igus robolink modular robotic system is an example of this.
Asia Pacific Regional Director, Hypertherm
2018 marked Hypertherm’s 50th year and we have grown from a manufacturer of plasma systems to a global provider of cutting solutions. Moving forward, our continued investment in research and development is part of our efforts to bring more breakthrough technologies to the market, such as the recently released X-definition class plasma system.
In 2019, Asia Pacific will continue to be a promising region for the industry due to rapid population and economic growth, industrialization and business-friendly measures introduced by governments. Besides the major markets in Oceania and Japan, the rapidly growing industrial manufacturing sector in India and Southeast Asia are also expected to contribute significantly to the region’s economic growth.
Change In Business Models In The Metal Cutting Industry
The metal cutting industry will shift from a demand driven model to a more competition driven model, where the key driver is automation and customers are increasingly looking to reduce reliance on labour. In fact, automation will continue to be the biggest development in the metal cutting industry as manufacturers in the region continue to balance technology with capacity and competitive demands.
Industry 4.0 Innovations
IIoT will continue to shape the manufacturing industry in 2019. Rising technologies such as machines, robots and other equipment on a production floor will be able to communicate with each other and gather data in the cloud for analysis. And with the data, a manufacturer will have greater insights which allows for predictive analysis to occur. This aligns to the shift in the industry from preventive maintenance to predictive maintenance.
In the future, fluctuating raw material prices will also impact the industry and transformations within the manufacturing sector will also be further propelled by the rapid evolution of technology. To achieve growth targets in the coming year, manufacturers will increasingly see the need to prioritize investments in technology that will enable them to improve their business agility.
Senior Vice President. EOS, Singapore
The additive manufacturing (AM) market is set to grow at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of around 27 percent between 2018 (USD 1.73 billion) and 2023 (USD 5.66 billion). In fact, AM in Asia Pacific is expected to have the highest CAGR due to the region having the fastest growth for the automotive and printed electronics sectors. This offers more opportunities for AM adoption in the manufacturing industry.
Decentralised, Distributed And Domestic Manufacturing Models
Rising protectionism and trade conflicts will increasingly push global supply chains towards decentralization and regionalization when it comes to manufacturing. And this, coupled with the digitalization of manufacturing and AM will serve as an enabler for distributed manufacturing. Businesses that adopt smart technologies like AM to 3D print parts and components will also be able to reduce production costs, processes, and time through part redesign and integration. This makes domestic manufacturing more practical than importing from abroad.
Continued Innovation And Adoption Of AM Across Industries
AM is reported to have a global economic impact of USD 250 billion by 2025 and the aerospace and defense industry is expected to continue leading AM adoption. Moreover, the global aerospace AM market is reportedly expected to register a CAGR close to 22.3 percent during the forecast period of 2018 to 2023.
In terms of the healthcare industry, AM adoption is expected to increase and with the aging population expected to rise, this trend is set to continue due to an expected increase in demand for personalized healthcare and treatments, as well as customized 3D-printed medical devices. For the automotive industry, AM’s ability to decrease production lead time, increase efficiency in logistics management, and ensure effective use of components/materials will result in its increased adoption. This trend is set to continue and the global automotive 3D printing market is predicted to be valued at over USD 8 billion by 2024. On the other hand, tooling and robotics are also expected to drive AM’s market share in APAC from 2018 to 2023.
President, Singapore Manufacturing Federation
The manufacturing industry in Asia is polarised into three categories – the “factories of the world”, the factories supplying to “factories of the world”, and the “middleman”, where most manufacturers in Asia are a part of. In Singapore, the industry is undergoing a two-part transformation – digitalisation and servitisation.
Due to Singapore’s relatively high labour cost compared to the region and talent shortage, the industry is also moving up the value chain and exploring the use of AI, IoT, robotics, automation and other digital tools to keep costs low and to increase productivity. Digitalisation itself is expected to quite significantly alter and remake the landscape of the industry.
Digitalisation Of Manufacturing And Supply Chains
To be digitalised is to implement these few technologies – additive manufacturing, AI, advanced manufacturing, blockchain, cloud computing, big data, e-commerce and future technologies (robotics, advanced automation, etc.).
Therefore, as manufacturing becomes increasingly digitalised, supply chain models must also become increasingly digitalised by implementing the above technologies. And this will lead to end-to-end integration. Furthermore, with this evolution of the supply chain model, shorter lead times, increased flexibility through real-time optimisation, increased efficiency and increased transparency and personalisation of services will be observed. A digitalised supply chain model is one in which processes are connected through a sensor network and managed through a central data hub and analytics engine.
Adopting The Right Technologies Amidst Economic Uncertainty
Due to the ongoing trade war, there is a fear that demand and investments will shrink. Protectionist attitude and interest rates are also on the rise. Thus, manufacturers can make use of technologies and innovate their business models to improve their productivity, efficiency and competency in order to overcome the adversities ahead. With the right technologies, the industry may even disrupt and affect other sectors, causing a ripple effect that could accelerate the advancement of businesses embracing Industry 4.0 sooner rather than later.
Automation Charter Chair, The Singapore Industrial Automation Association & Managing Director, Beckhoff
In 2019, at the mass market stage, enterprise digitisation will penetrate deeper into the manufacturing floor. This will cause enterprises to look towards obtaining data from as many machines and sensors as possible, which is a trend that has continued on from past years.
Overcoming The Barriers To Digitalisation
In order to digitalise more effectively, companies have more to gain from standardisation than competition. Currently, Germany is leading the effort to create common industry wide standards and they have done quite well as the VDMA is leading the machine standardisation for Germany. Countries in the ASEAN region may need to follow on their footsteps. Next, governments across the region should also help in funding digitisation initiatives and this is especially important for SMEs.
Finally, re-training and upskilling the workforce is needed. We are facing shortages in data engineers, data scientists, data analysts in the region and re-training and upskilling is especially important as older manufacturing jobs disappear and newer ones are created in their place.
The Importance Of Data Collection, ML And AR Technologies
On top of sending data over standardised communication protocol, companies will increasingly look towards getting standardised information from each machine type. This so called “information modelling” and is relevant to a production line today as there is hardly a “homogenous” production line containing the same machine model from the same manufacturer.
Another focus for the metalworking and CNC world will be the use of AR technologies. While still a cutting edge technology today, this technology holds a lot of promise from speeding up operators to training, to advancing maintenance work. At the bleeding edge, we are seeing an increasing trend of ML implementation directly on a premise or machine. While this is on early stages, we feel that this would be the internal focus of many bleeding edge suppliers moving forward.
Managing Director and Vice President, Southeast Asia, Siemens PLM Software
The outlook in Asia Pacific continues to be favourable in 2019. With a dynamic economy and an extremely fast-growing internet population, Southeast Asian markets are good options for companies looking to diversify and add to their operations in China. Especially as rising labour costs and increasingly volatile market conditions in China cause more firms to relocate their production in order to spread out risk and gain access to new markets.
The Growth Of Mass Customisation Focused Technologies
The shift towards a knowledge-intensive economy in Southeast Asia is a by-product of the global movement towards a more individualized and personalized consumption economy. Therefore, the region is expected to transit from the age of mass-production, to one of mass-customisation which is a trend that has been highlighted at the ASEAN Summit. Due to this, we are expecting manufacturers to adopt and implement technologies such as cloud-based product lifecycle management solutions, as well as Digital Twin technologies, in order to be able to produce meet the level of rigour and scale that is required for mass-customisation.
The Development Of Disruptive And New Technologies
Disruptive technologies such as robotics, computer numerical control (CNC) machines, additive manufacturing, artificial intelligence, scanning technology and smart devices will persist and will be ubiquitous across the product value chain. In the case of additive manufacturing, markets such as Singapore, China and South Korea have already identified it as a growth potential and are actively investing in the technology to create high-end jobs and services.
Additionally, Dyson has also announced plans for its first electric car, to be built in a new automotive manufacturing facility in Singapore that is set for completion in 2020. The selection of Singapore as a site for this facility – which has not seen automotive manufacturing since Ford closed its factory 40 years ago – is a surprise for many. This investment which is part of Dyson’s USD 3.3 billion global investment drive in new technology, is a game changer for the electronics and heavy machinery industries in the region.
Regional Executive Director, UBM
In 2019, the ASEAN region will remain as an attractive area for investment. The ongoing trade war between China and the USA is creating problems and opportunities within the ASEAN region as although foreign investment companies are starting to relocate their manufacturing plants away from China, countries within ASEAN particularly Vietnam and Indonesia, are benefiting from the relocation of manufacturing plants into their countries.
The Rise Of Indonesia And Vietnam
Most of UBM’s trade shows have continued to grow, particularly in Vietnam where there are numerous opportunities in both HCM and Hanoi. Currently, the biggest problem for the organisation of events in Vietnam is the size of the venues in both HCM and Hanoi which restricts UBM’s expansion plans. However, this also reinforces Vietnam’s position as UBM’s strongest market since 2018.
In Indonesia, the economic growth in the short term will be modest due to the Rupiah depreciation as we all as the impact of the upcoming presidential elections in April. This will affect overseas investment as investors take a “wait and see” approach. Thus, investments will be halted for at least the first half of the year. For this reason, Indonesia is expected to rely on domestic consumption and household spending to drive the economy. However in the long term, Indonesia remains a strategic and lucrative market for investors as it continues to offer strong economic fundamentals to spur the growth of the middle class and fuel consumer spending which is a key driver of growth.
Growth Of Smart Factories And Smart Manufacturing In Southeast Asia
Southeast Asia’s main selling point can no longer be its low wages if it is to remain competitive. Implementation of new technologies are needed to help close the productivity gap. This means factories will need to integrate technologies such as robotics to maximise productivity, minimise human failure and prevent work-related accidents. Aside from that, companies could integrate AI and data analytics to make automation processes more intelligent and to improve efficiency.
A report by McKinsey & Company has highlighted that Southeast Asia needs to embrace Industry 4.0 to unlock its potential in manufacturing. Through this report, it is stated that disruptive technologies associated with Industry 4.0 would have an impact on productivity on a scale that is similar to the introduction of the steam engine had during the first Industrial Revolution. Globally, if the digital technologies of Industry 4.0 were to be embraced and integrated efficiently, it is forecasted that it could contribute between USD 1.2 trillion and USD 3.7 trillion in business profits. Meanwhile in ASEAN, the impact of Industry 4.0 could see productivity gains of between USD 216 billion to USD 627 billion.
2018 was one of the most successful years for Bystronic due to numerous product launches in the gold, silver and bronze segments of the market as well as international business expansions.
In 2019, the economy is uncertain because of market turmoil and currency slumps but sheet metal continues to have a wide application in industries that are set for growth such as the automotive, semiconductor and electronic industries. Additionally, governments across Asia are continuously building and developing infrastructure and new industrial areas which create indirect opportunities for the sheet metal fabrication market.
The Growth Of Automation
The industry is currently in the age of automation. This is because automation allows for shorter lead times, greater accuracy, higher quality and competitive pricing. In the field of laser cutting, automation makes it possible to process not only large series but also small batch sizes, while maintaining the flexibility that users require to always respond to changing order situations.
Implementation Of Networked Production
With automation drastically changing the outlook of the sheet metal industry, Bystronic is systematically driving forward the vision of “World Class Manufacturing”. This is based on a comprehensive range of new products and services with which Bystronic is gearing its users’ process landscape towards networked production. It features innovative solutions that go far beyond the conventional idea of a machine tool. It’s about fusing the individual processes relating to laser cutting and bending into a network of intelligent components.
LVD in collaboration with the German-Malaysian Institute, GMI, has presented the seminar “Advanced Sheet Metal Processing 4.0, Smart Technology in Action” to mark the official opening of GMI’s Sheet Metal Processing Technology Center at Jalan Ilmiah, Taman Universiti in Selangor. His Excellency Pascal Gregoire, Ambassador of Belgium to Malaysia, and YBhg Dato Dr Ir Andy Seo, GMI Board of Directors/Vice President of FMM, along with approximately 120 guests attended the event. The ceremony also included the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between GMI and LVD Company.
The fourth industrial revolution is transforming manufacturing through automation and data exchange. The principles behind Industry 4.0, QRM (Quick Response Manufacturing) fits in with LVD’s smart manufacturing philosophy. And demonstrations of GMI’s Industry 4.0-enabled sheet metal fabrication equipment, including laser cutting and punching machinery, automated tool changer press brake and automation devices were showcased as part of the seminar. Kurt Debbaut, LVD’s CADMAN Product Manager, led the discussion and subsequent audience dialogue, while LVD Malaysia representatives provided machinery demonstrations and shared their technical expertise.
Regarding current industry developments, Debbaut has commented that, “Today’s manufacturing culture of small batches, short delivery times, and increasingly complex parts is making Industry 4.0 a necessity,” he further added that, “Combining orders to make more efficient use of material and improving internal logistics is a must to reduce lead times, lower stock inventories and shorten turnaround times.”
Advanced Skills Training
GMI is a hub for advanced skills training by offering high-quality technical education, training and services in response to global industry demands and trends like Industry 4.0. And its high-technology facilities promote a true industrial experience and advance its goal to develop technically-skilled graduates to support sheet metal industries.
Through a long-standing relationship with LVD, a variety of LVD sheet metal fabrication machinery were installed at GMI to provide students a hands-on sheet metalworking learning experience.