India's quadrilateral highway leads to foreign tie-ups

Wednesday, 18 December 2002, 08:00 Hrs
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BANGALORE: India's Rs 540 billion golden quadrilateral highway project appears to be pushing foreign construction equipment makers into tie-ups with domestic players in a bid to grab a slice of the huge pie.

Greaves Limited of the Thapar group has tied up with Gomaco of the U.S., said to be world leaders in concrete paving, Soilmec of Italy for piling machines and Extec of Britain for crushers to enhance its share in the mechanisation of India's construction industry.

Construction equipment has a one-fourth share valued at 100 to 120 billion in the golden quadrilateral highway project that aims to link the four metros of Delhi, Mumbai, Chennai and Kolkata.

"Now that the government is giving incentives to complete projects on time and there are no cost overruns, the mechanisation of the Indian construction industry is taking place," said D. Ramesh Kumar, Greaves Limited senior vice president for construction equipment business.

The 6 billion Greaves Limited is an engineering major with core competencies in construction equipment, engines and power transmission systems.

Greaves Limited, which already has Bomag of Germany and CIFA of Italy as partners to bring in advanced technology products, has competitors like L&T that has already tied up with the European company Case for pumps. The big gun in the industry, Ingersoll Rand, is already here.

"Highway construction has just taken off in India and these tie ups will also give us a competitive edge over others in the industry," said Greaves Limited MD and CEO Praveen Sachdev.

"In the last three years, primarily due to an unrelated diversification (into plastics), we suffered losses. We have closed that plant now and have already turned the corner," Sachdev added.
Source: IANS
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