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The Two Sessions Sound the Horn for Supply-side Structural Reform in Plastic Machinery Industry

As the Two Sessions unveiled on March 3, business insiders predicted that this year’s hot topics would center around how to comprehensively deepen the institutional reform, boost endogenous momentum for economic growth, and advance the supply-side structural reform, the last of which concerns plastic machinery businesses the most.

A late starter, Chinese plastic machinery industry has seen soaring growth, with looming signs of overcapacity, but is overcapacity a pervasive problem with Chinese plastic machinery manufacturers? There are about 546 of them in China, and most of them are producing injection molding machines. Price competition is white-heat for products such as low-precision PP-sheet extruders, UV coating machines, foam mat machines, laminating machines, plastic auxiliary machines and cast film machines. Meanwhile Chinese plastic machinery manufacturers are negotiating with overseas counterparts on the import of plastic machines on a daily basis. Manufacturers are no longer limited to the manufacturing of daily necessities such as wash basins, toothbrushes and water buckets; they are high-tech suppliers for aerospace & aviation, national defense, electronics & electricity, optical communication, construction materials, packaging, automobiles and transport as well as for advanced manufacturing industries such as new energy, new materials, energy conservation and environmental protection, biomedicine and information networks and for the manufacturing of aircrafts and high-speed trains. Only those with insufficient input in R&D are excessive and doomed to be outcompeted.

Imported advanced plastic machines are at least ten times more expensive than those made at home because those imported from Japan, Europe, and North America far excel in efficiency, precision and stability. China imports more than 10,000 sets of such high-end equipment every year, including nearly all the large-size, high-speed, specialized precision plastic machines used in the country. Such high-tech, high-output, high-demand and high-profit plastic machinery is exactly what we need to convert excessive capacity into in the process of supply-side structural reform.

Chinese plastic machinery industry is still in the ascent and needs to input heavily into R&D, learn from and absorb advanced foreign production technologies, and make secondary innovation. The future priorities will be the development of high-precision injection molding machines, high-precision extruders, large-size machines, micro machines, energy-efficient plastic machines, automated and intelligent plastic machines.

In recent years, Chinese plastic machinery industry has scored progress in developing large-torque, high-speed and efficient products. Advanced separator screws and slotting-machine tubes are widely used by Chinese extruder manufacturers, so are basket-shaped machine heads and plate-shaped machine heads that are suitable for processing polyolefin, as well as programmable controllers and LCD touchscreen industrial computers. The top 10 manufacturers in this industry take up 39% of the market sales. In the past five years, thanks to technology promotion and competitive prices, Chinese manufacturers have successfully entered German, Japanese, European, American and other advanced markets.

Since the 13th Five-Year Plan was proposed, some competitive manufacturers have emerged. The research team headed by academician Qu Jinping is leading the world in the research and application of the blade tension theory. The reform of the thermal process featuring the use of traditional screws has sounded the horn for the supply-side structural reform in the plastic machinery industry. The accelerating industrialization process and the industry-wide reform will inevitably intensify the competition in the Chinese plastic machinery industry and bring it to a higher level. (Sohu News)

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