Against the global trends, India’s Print Industry is still on the rise and is expected to grow at a CAGR of 7.8% between 2015 and 2020. In the last year the amount of print media publications in India grew at a rate of 5.13%, adding 5,423 new publications. This leads to an increasing demand for paper. To meet the growing demand the country’s paper industry needs new capacities with improved efficiency and more raw materials.

The current annual paper consumption in India is estimated to be around 13 million tonne and is growing at an average of 8% per year. Although the per capita consumption is quite low compared to other countries like China and the USA, the demand is set to rise with paper consumption expected to touch 27 million tonne by 2030. Also newspaper production will increase to around 6 million tonnes by 2025, requiring 8 million tonnes of recycled fibre.

At present the industry uses over 90,000 hectare of forest land for plantation every year. Due to extensive social farm forestry plans by industry majors the situation is expected to improve in the coming years. To the $2.9 billion, which has been invested in the domestic paper sector in the last five years, another $13.8 billion of investment is necessary to put up new capacities by 2030 and meet the demand. Interest from foreign investors is also seen in the industry. The Japanese paper and pulp giant Nippon Paper Industries Co. Ltd has entered the Indian market by purchasing the country’s largest maker of paper cup, Plus Paper Foodpac, a manufacturing company owned by the BK Modi Group. Plus Paper Foodpac operates two factories in India. Nippon Paper plans to use its appropriated manufacturing knowledge to boost factory productivity and quality in India.

To promote the Print Industry, M. Venkaiah Naidu, minister of information and broadcasting (I&B) said, the ministry has ordered changes in print media policy and guidelines which aim to promote transparency and accountability in the issuing of ads. The Indian Government is also trying to address the demands of the newspaper industry for increase in advertisement rates, reduction in duty on newsprint and giving more weightage to regional newspapers in terms of advertisements. Further, the Government is planning to come up with new foreign direct investments (FDI) liberalisation for several sectors also including the print media industry. The current policy permits an FDI limit of only 26% but the Economic Affairs Ministry is working on a proposal to ramp up the FDI limit to 49% in print news media. By the End of April 2017 the proposal could be ready for approval by the Union Cabinet.

Apart from the conventional Print Industry, the digital Printing Industry in India has transformed with new technologies like 3D-Printing and is now providing cost-effective and customized solutions. An increasing number of industries use 3D-Printers, also for printing body parts in the medical sector. A young team of doctors of a hospital in Gurugram have successfully performed a surgery on the failing spine of a woman and inserted for the first time a 3D printed titanium implant. A participating doctor said, “3D printing technology has opened up a whole new vista to re-create body parts to save lives.” Although the Indian 3D-Market is still at a nascent stage, the sector will grow rapidly in the coming years. The 3D-Printer-Market is expected to grow with a CAGR of 19.6% and touch $79 million by 2021. A lot of sectors and companies have already recognized the enormous improvements in manufacturing efficiency, and not only the 3D-printing-market, but the whole printing industry is going to drive further growth.

The Print Industry in India is growing at an annual rate of 12% and generates an estimated turnover of $11 billion. With the rapid modernisation and urbanisation and the expected liberalization in the FDI policy for print media, it is now the right time for foreign investors to enter the Print Industry in India.

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