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Compliance concerns to slowdown adoption of green wires & cables

March 25, 2022 6:43 pm

Compliance concerns to slowdown adoption of green wires & cables

Discussing the importance of installing safe and quality cables with EPR Magazine, Bhushan Sawhney, Polycab, and Arvind Agarwal, Havells emphasises the need to increase awareness of the vitality of sustainable cables for enhanced safety in your premises.
Acceptance of green and sustainable cables and wires
Industries are setting standards and norms that must be followed in terms of product features and manufacturing. Progressive and futuristic firms are already moving towards green and sustainable operations, while for others, as of now, compliance considerations are serving as drivers to adopt green quotients.
In India, BIS is prevalent, whereas globally different standards like BS, IEC, etc. are followed. BIS standards are a combination of many global standards and are being followed while manufacturing the cables, be it the technical parameters or mechanical parameters. It ensures all the precautions and specifications are met while manufacturing the cables in India. The cables and manufacturing facilities are regularly audited and tested by BIS.
Polycab has taken a lead here by developing green wires. Elements such as lead and cadmium are regulated in insulation by following regulations such as RoHS and Reach.The biggest challenge is public awareness. People are not aware of the danger that the entire environment is facing. Though countries and other big organisations are having meetings and agreements on climate change, citizens are not aware of them. Thus, many just ignore the green and eco-friendly commodities in favour of the inexpensive ones, “says Bhushan Sawhney, Executive President and Chief Business Officer – Cables, Polycab India Limited.
According to Arvind Agrawal, Vice President, Havells India, “The factor in India which needs to be improved is the correct product for the correct application. The other important parameter is the proper termination of all the electrical circuits. As a layman, one might not understand all the technical details of the electrical system, and it’s essential to trust an experienced professional for wiring, rewiring, and maintenance work.
We at Havells have our own NABL accredited research and testing labs, where we carry out testing and are involved in continuous development. The high degree of backward integration helps us maintain the standard quality of the product.
Import and raw material costs have an impact
Raw material costs have been a topic of vexation for the entire wires and cables business globally. In 2021, the average global copper cost has seen an increase of 25.7 percent over that in 2020, and the average rate for aluminium has seen a rise of 42.18 percent over that in 2020. Noting the same, Bhushan says that the domino ripple of the raw material costs shook the prices of wires and cables, poking multiple sharp price spikes in 2021. These sudden price spikes quash the pre-decided budgets and expenditure plans of the on-going projects. This impacts the entire industry severely, “he adds.
Whereas Aravind highlights that there has been an unprecedented rise in raw material prices over the last year or so, In certain product categories like switchgears, lighting, cables and wires, and consumer durables, the last couple of years have seen tepid growth for consumer durables, with the COVID waves hitting demand.
Increasing awareness of safe wires and cables
Using the proper wires and cables provides one with a sense of safety and security. Sudden voltage spikes from electrical grids or electrical equipment malfunctions can cause a surge in current flow in the wire or cable. Explaining it further, Bhushan stresses the fact that if the product isn’t designed to handle such spikes, it can lead to fire and short circuits. Additionally, in the event of a fire, smoke and toxic fumes are more fatal than the fire itself. However, the professional segment of wires and cables customers (project managers, architects, and so on) are well-versed in product types and features. They understand the importance of using good quality wire in the properties they build and the grave risk of using substandard wires. They too prefer quality over price today. “Sales of expensive and premium products like BMS cables, optical fibre cables, etc. are on the rise,” he adds.


Taking the discussion further, Aravind believes the fire-resistant, flame retardant cable market in India is encouragingly active. India is one of the fastest growing economies in the world, and this growth brings significant changes in the country’s infrastructure, with more advanced vertical building concepts and newer technologies. “All this evolving infrastructure and technological growth is powered by electricity, and as a result, the quality of wire and cables becomes very important,” he further added.
Fire retardant and fire resistant wires and cables are available
The LDC department of Polycab handles a bouquet of several products. Building Wires are a broad category of wires with class 5 annealed copper conductors designed specifically for use in B2B real estate transactions. The product range starts from Data Flame Retardant and Lead Free (FRLF) and goes up to Green Wires (HR-FR-LSHLF), bracketing Polycab FRLF, Polycab Flame RetardantLow Smoke and Halogen (FRLSH), Polycab Halogen Free Flame Retardant (HFFR) 01ZK and Polycab HFFR-04XZ-K wires.
The second segment is industrial wires. This category encompasses several flexible cables of class 2-3 annealed copper conductors, from single core to up to 6 cores, with a nominal area of 0.5 sqm up to 400 sqm, with an FR insulator or FRLS insulator. All products mentioned above are RoHS and REACH compliant. 
On the other hand, Havells is one of the first companies to get an ISI licence for our HFFR range of wires, which are considered the safest and most environmentally friendly wires in their segment. We also have solar and shielded cables in our product range. Shielded cables act to reduce the volume and intensity of all kinds of electrical noise and EMI, decreasing the adverse effects and losses on signals and transmission. In the solar cable category, we foresee good business from this segment in the near future.
Commitment to quality and safety 
Polycab has various large-scale manufacturing hubs, a comprehensive quality testing staff, high-volume warehouses and depots, a pan-India distributor base, and good logistics partners. As previously said, all of this enables us to give the quickest turnaround and delivery time possible. Polycab is ideally positioned to handle any variety and magnitude of demand in the future, taking into account all of the above factors.
With a wide choice of wires and cables, Havells has always been committed to offering consumers with the best, safest, and most sophisticated technologies. Our strategy has always been to deliver best-in-class quality and services to boost product value and meet the highest expectations. People in India are still evolving in terms of using the correct electrical products, particularly cables, for the required application, but we have seen a positive trend in the last ten years where specifiers and consultants are being used even for small residential projects, where they have started recommending wires such as FRLS/HFFR, and more.  
Forward looking 
For aspiring manufacturers that wish to capitalise on the business-friendly opportunities laid out in the Union Budget, the need of the hour is to buckle up, expand their facilities, and supply chain structure. Apart from huge demand in quantity, the need for several new product types, like BMS Cables, Fire Survival Cables, and Home Automation, among others, is also likely to witness a rise.
There is a huge entry cost and a market penetration cost barrier in the wire and cable industry. Procurement of raw materials, establishing workshops and factories, testing laboratories, supply chain partners, depots, warehouses, etc., attract titanic investment. Very few Indian manufacturers can process and handle large orders and shipments of wires, cables, and other electrical commodities. This is because most manufacturers rely on imports and outsourcing for raw materials, and some simply do not have the plants and machinery to handle huge demand.
Progressive and futuristic firms are already moving towards green and sustainable operations. Bhushan Sawhney, Executive President & Chief Business Officer – Cables, Polycab India Limited.
Increasing infrastructure and technological advancements in the electrical sector demand for installation of safety embedded cables and wires. Arvind Agrawal, Vice President, Havells India

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