INDIAN SCENARIO

Govt. of India formulating India’s 3D Printing Policy to Develop a Conducive Ecosystem for Local Firms

India’s 3D Printing Policy
Above: think3D’s 3D printing facility in Vizag/Image Source: think3D

The Ministry of Electronics and Information (MeitY) of the Government of India revealed that it is formulating India’s 3D printing policy aimed at promoting 3D printing on an industrial scale and helping domestic companies overcome technical and economic barriers so that they can build supportive and ancillary facilities for world leaders in the technology, such as the US and China.

According to IT Ministry’s estimates, the 3D printing industry is forecasted to reach $34.8 billion by 2024, which is growing at a compound annual growth rate of 23.2 per cent.

Speaking to The Indian Express, government officials expressed that India’s 3D printing policy will help develop a conducive ecosystem for design, development and deployment of 3D printing and additive manufacturing.

A senior IT Ministry official commented, “3D printing and a viable industry around it is mostly in the shape of additive manufacturing, wherein companies make specific products for projects where there are very specific demands such as lightweight equipment, etc. Our aim for now is to build around that requirement.”

3D printing in India
Above: Wipro3D’s Metal AM Solutions Centre in Bengaluru/Image Credit: Wipro 3D

Government officials revealed that a draft policy will soon be formulated and sent out to experts from India’s 3D printing Industry and seek their inputs and opinions on the same. According to some estimates, India’s 3D printing industry size is around $67 Million but has the potential to grow to become a $1 billion industry

Speaking about India’s 3D printing policy, the official said, “There is not only the manufacturing aspect of it, but also design and software. India’s 3D printing policy will aim to cover both sides. We have a headstart as far as software is concerned. The idea is to build on it.”

According to the draft policy, the Central Government will also look to encourage market leaders to establish global bases for 3D printing in India, while also discouraging imports of printed material for domestic requirements.

Other key areas of focus include the auto and ancillary auto and motor spare part business, such as engines, interior and exterior parts of luxury vehicles, or landing gear, complex brackets, and turbine blades.

According to policy makers, “There can be some application of it in consumer electronics, printed circuit boards, clothing, toys and jewellery as well. Only after we get some feedback from experts, both in India and the world, can we start to define the industries where it can be more viable and useful than others.”

The United States is the world leader in 3D printing with 35% market share whereas in Asia, China has a 50% market share, followed by Japan at 30% and South Korea 10%. But globally, the

One of the officials said, “At most places domestically, we are at the research and development stage. There is considerable interest, but it is at a very nascent stage. It has not yet evolved for strategic industrial integration in sectors like aerospace, which require utmost precision.”

Policy makers also revealed, “In our initial meetings on the subject, there was a lot of resistance on whether this technology would eat into the jobs of highly-skilled workers in the medical equipment or aerospace technology sectors. 3D printing may not lead to an increase in net employment, but this technology is something we can push ahead with.”

The key challenge in formulating and implementing India’s 3D printing policy is to convince the industry and ministries to push for its adoption in their respective sectors.

Source: The Indian Express


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