ST 004-13 2013-02-25

Modernization strategy causes growth

Dr. Karl Tragl, Chairman of the Executive Board of Bosch Rexroth AG

The modernization of the Russian industry is picking up speed. In 2011, Russia imported machines, plants, and equipment worth €29B and assured its position among the ten largest machine markets in the world. Despite these increased import levels, factories and plants still have a significant amount of catching up to do. Russia will thus continue to be a growth market for machinery construction in the years ahead.

At present, raw materials exports constitute 80% of Russia's exports. To reduce dependency on fluctuating raw materials prices, the Russian government is pursuing a modernization strategy for its industry, much of which is outdated. Surveys conducted by the Russian Union of Machine Builders have shown that over one million machines 20 years or older are in use at Russian factories. At the same time, the demographic trend increases the need for modern automation solutions due to the fact that the Russian population is estimated to decline by eight million individuals by 2020. The result is an ongoing high need for automation, especially for tasks which are very physically demanding.

The initial steps toward modernization are to import machines and plants. "But the modernization plans themselves also mean an exceptional opportunity for Russian machinery construction, if they are able to develop state-of-the-art modern machines very quickly," emphasizes Dr. Karl Tragl, Chairman of the Executive Board of Bosch Rexroth AG. "To do so, they are looking for support from globally leading automation manufacturers, such as Bosch Rexroth." Russian universities and research institutions with whom the drive and control manufacturer works in close collaboration also play a key role. Bosch Rexroth founded a country unit back in 2001 and covers the most important industrial regions of the Russian Federation at seven sites.

But raw materials extraction will also remain a key pillar for the Russian economy in the future. There is also an urgent need for modernization when it comes to raw materials extraction, the heavy industry, and power plants. For this purpose, operators preferably commission regional engineering companies, but these often still have little experience when it comes to modern industrial manufacturing equipment. Bosch Rexroth industry specialists support these companies in such projects with their global experience.

The company also develops modules and system solutions tailored to regional needs. Climatic conditions require all components to be suitable for use in very low temperatures for all outdoor applications. "Out in the natural gas fields in Siberia, workers have had to manually adjust the majority of controls and instruments on individual drilling equipment, even in temperatures as low as -50 degrees," as Dr. Tragl describes one of the many challenges. "We have developed arctic-ready adjustment units that now allow technicians to make the necessary adjustments from the heated control center with the click of a mouse."

Russia is also trying to reduce CO2 emissions: in 2009, the Duma passed a law to increase energy efficiency. Bosch Rexroth offers several system solutions for more energy efficient processes for machines and plants. Ready-to-install drives for control fittings increase the efficiency of gas power plants as well as gas and steam power plants for power generation thanks to their dynamics and precision. Electrohydraulic system solutions for mobile machines such as tractors or excavators increase performance while offering low levels of diesel consumption. The Chairman of the Board is sure of one thing: "The modernization of the Russian industry has only just begun and will be one of the major growth drivers for international machinery construction in the intermediate term."

Photo: Dr. Karl Tragl


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