Rahul L. Shah Director, Polyplast Chemi-Plants ( I ) Pvt. Ltd.
Polyplast Chemi-Plants ( I ) Pvt. Ltd.

One – I understand this is the company’s golden jubilee year of foundation. How has been the journey so far?

To start with, it’s been one fantastic roller coaster ride of 50 years and this wouldn’t have been possible without the solid grounds laid down by the founders of the company. It definitely wasn’t an easy ride, from struggling to get business when we started in 1967 to being one of the biggest FRP fabricators in India; we’ve definitely come a long way. Honestly a strong foundation not just economically but also technically is also greatly responsible for our success which saw us move from projects of manufacturing small tanks of 500 sq. ft. to 5,20,000 sq. ft. And today we are proud that in the past 50 years we have stood strong be it in booming markets or recessions and have proudly executed projects globally in USA, Canada, and South America. Today Polyplast has representative offices internationally in Poland, Qatar, Oman, UAE, Indonesia, and Israel apart from India.

Two – Chemical and petrochemical industry have shown a promise of solid growth in recent years, according to the union government’s website. Do you share the government’s optimistic projection?

Oh, yes most definitely we do & the fact is that it is just not the optimistic projection by the government but a ground reality for the industry is a great boost for the entire market. We have already started the ground work of engineering and procurement as the number of projects announced for the chemical industry for the next 3 years is remarkable. We really look forward to the next few years as an industry with the current projections and make India a globally acclaimed nation for manufacturing chemical tanks.

Three – Manufacturing of products such as chemical equipment’s, storage tanks, pipe lines, pipe fittings, process/reaction vessels, involve industrial hazards. What level of safety measures does the company have in place to avoid accidents?

In a FRP & thermoplastic fabrication workshop major accidents usually occur on account of factors like – fire due to petrochemicals, cuts & bruises from cutters & grinders etc. For us our staff safety comes first and therefore several procedures for storing & handling petrochemicals have been put in place. All critical chemicals are stored in an air conditioned rooms. The chemicals which cannot come in contact with each other are color coded and put away in different rooms. The containers storing these particular chemicals are also marked distinctly so there is no possibility of interchangeability.  The shop floors also have specific cease fire equipment’s relevant to petrochemical fire readily accessible along with several escape routes clearly marked in the factories for emergencies. All grinders, cutters or rotating equipment’s have guards so the possibilities of cuts & bruises are reduced as well.

Four – Effluent disposal in the chemical industry is considered a source of pollution. How do you ensure minimizing pollution on this count?

Today effluent disposal is a global problem & we at Polyplast take it very seriously as well. The first & the most tedious step we have taken is segregation of solid effluents into – FRP, Thermoplastic with FRP & only Thermoplastics. The Thermoplastics are given away to recycling companies. Thermosets are given to land filling companies or to incinerators depending upon how hazardous the plastic was. We also have a grinding machine to convert the plastic into powder which can be reused during manufacturing of equipment’s.

Five – Who are main clients of your products?

Chemicals, Chloralkali , Fertilizers, Steel companies are our major customers, any company who uses corrosive chemicals which cannot be stored and processed in metallic containers can potentially be our client as well.

Six – What has been turnover and profit in the last fiscal?

Seven – Any expansion plans?

Yes most definitely expansion is on the cards, in fact for us it started last year when we have put up a 4 acre facility in Vadodara, Gujarat. We are also planning to put up a 10 acre facility at Shahpur in Maharashtra by 2020, land for which has already been acquired.

Eight – A section of environmentalists calls for total ban on plastic use.  How will you counter their contention?

Environment consciousness is the need of the hour for most industries dealing with non-biodegradable materials and we are not far away from the same. We strongly support initiatives taken for the betterment of the world and have no desire to counter this contention.  Having said that, one cannot negate that plastic is a problem because it’s non-biodegradable and if there is a section who is working on developing biodegradable plastics we will be the first ones to adopt it once it’s commercialized. As of today the particular sector that we cater to needs plastic which cannot degrade with chemicals let alone be biodegradable and hence we continue to use what is the best possible available option.

Nine – What incentives or measures do you expect from the government to boost up the chemical industry?

For a smooth functioning and progress of an industry not only in our country but globally the key is a good government. For our industry particularly we would look at two key measures to be undertaken for ease of operations –

Effortless clearances & single window policy to get all approvals for setting up a factory.

Levy anti-dumping duty on products from China which are sold at cheap rates due to incentives given by the Chinese government leading to cost pressures on Indian industries.

Ten – After three years of the Modi rule, do you think the NDA government is doing enough for boosting the industrial growth?

Continual growth of the infrastructure, tighter policies and continual marketing of Indian industries is the key for growth of business in India. And we believe that the government has already started doing the ground work for development of the Indian industries like setting up roads, improving water and electricity supply etc., so we see an extremely bright future for the businesses.

Another step taken for the ease of operation is a single window taxation system i.e. GST, which is very important for attracting foreign investments as it provides ease of Pan India operations.

And of course the feather in the cap especially for B2B organizations was – ‘Make in India’. It was by far the biggest campaign done by any government within the last 70 years; from individual state campaigns to making India a rising star on the global map, this initiative succeeded on all the forefronts. And lastly our esteemed Prime Minister’s engagement with global leaders and the UN has definitely changed people’s perspective of India.