About 50,000 units in the plastics processing sector are believed to be operating below 50% of their rated capacity due to a sharp rise in raw material prices, said heads of All India plastic industry associations. They added that if the crisis prolonged, about 20,000 MSME plastic units would be forced to close down.
Industry bodies said large petrochemical companies, including PSUs, had exponentially increased raw material prices by 40-155% in the last 8-10 months. The associations have urged the Centre to direct Indian Oil, GAIL, OPAL, Haldia Petrochemicals and MRPL to streamline supply of raw materials at fair prices.
Several industry associations have urged the government to ban the export of the raw materials for one year and allow import of raw materials not produced in the country.
“The industry is facing acute shortage of polymers, the main raw material for plastic goods production, which has varied applications,” said Chandrakant Turakhia, president of the All India Plastics Manufacturers Association.
“The increase in raw material costs and its acute shortage in market is leading to escalation in project costs and is adversely impacting the cost competitiveness of MSMEs,” said Arvind Mehta, chairman, governing council of The All India Plastics Manufacturers Association.