AdsaleCPRJ has invited Giorgio Colombo, the newly elected chairman of ASSOCOMAPLAST, the Italian Plastics and Rubber Processing Machinery and Mould Manufacturers' Association, to talk exclusively his plan to lead the Italian machinery industry out of downturn.
CPRJ：Mr Colombo, congratulation again for being elected the chairman of ASSOCOMAPLAST. In personal level, what bring you to this election and what achievements you are targeted in your tenure?
GC：Thank you for your congratulations. Sincerely speaking, I have to afford a very hard task, in consideration of the critical period the worldwide economy is going through, in spite of the actual recovery registered in Italy and in Europe some months ago. I hope that such recovery will improve so that I can prepare an optimistic report of the assembly of ASSOCOMAPLAST Members' at the end of my chairmanship in June 2012. This will mean that the significant turmoil, begun in September 2008, will be only a bad memory for everyone.
CPRJ：ASSOCOMAPLAST and many other Italian exhibitors will feature K2010. What do you expect from the show?
GC：It is necessary to acknowledge that the three-yearly rendezvous of Düsseldorf is since many years an occasion of verify for the whole plastics and rubber industry, in order to evaluate its technical evolution and, generally speaking, the sectoral economic situation.
As in the past, during K2010, Italian presence is going to be massive and, occupying nearly one-fifth of the whole exhibiting surface (in the three sectors of: machinery, materials and products), it will be second, right after our Germans colleagues.
In detail, as for the machinery, ASSOCOMAPLAST Members will be 118, taking up a net exhibiting area of 15,000 square meters.
These important "figures" which, as you can imagine, mean big organizational and budget efforts, are, in my opinion, another confirmation that the Italian sectoral industry is capable to react against the global crisis that had a strong impact on plastics and rubber industry.
CPRJ：What are the major problems Italian companies are facing in expanding export market?
GC：For Italian manufacturers – as for besides competitors in the range of hi-tech machines such as Germans – the most negative matter to be faced is the lacking "culture" of plastics and rubber manufacture that characterize possible customers in several countries.
In many cases, unfortunately the attention is particularly dedicated to the price of a machine instead of its productivity and, as a consequence, the low cost of machines has advantages: our Association, for this reason, is developing since many years an intense programme of training courses in Italy and in many foreign countries to let acknowledge long term advantages of machinery and turn-key plants based on, as for the majority of Italian manufacturers, tens and tens years of experience and technological good reputation.
CPRJ：What are the traditional strength and weakness for Italian plastics and rubber machinery market? In which aspects that Italian companies has to improve in order to extend their competitive edge?
GC：It's somehow hard to highlight the main features of the Italian plastics and rubber processing machinery, avoiding to simply advertise them. However, it is beyond doubt that the made in Italy machinery belong to the high-tech category rather than to the low-cost one. But, if a customer pays attention to the value of money, Italian machinery are certainly among the most competitive ones.
Furthermore, many years of experience in developing new technologies made it possible to perform further important achievements: as I have mentioned before, energy efficiency (considering that now even more than in the past, it's important to save energy for reducing production's costs) and safety (focusing on workers' safety in the plant, around the equipment and in the whole surrounding area).
A longer version of this interview will be available on the latest issue of CPRJ International, to be issued this October and distributed also in K2010