कोलकाता Kolkata (KOAA): Titagarh Wagons Limited is one of the leading private sector wagon manufacturers in India. TWL is primarily engaged in the business of manufacturing Railway Wagons & EMUs (Coaches), Bailey Bridges, Heavy Earth Moving and Mining Equipment, Steel and SG iron castings of moderate to complex configuration etc. As an “Industry Partner” to the Defence Research and Development Establishment, Ministry of Defence (“DRDO”), TWL also manufactures certain products for the Indian defence establishment, such as special wagons, shelters and other engineering equipments.
According to news reports, Titagarh Wagons will now expand its global presence and tap the global metro, monorail and high speed market through its French subsidiary— Titagarh Wagons AFR. The company has now bagged an order from the French Railways for 400 hopper cereal wagons worth 39 million (nearly Rs.275 Crore) and is also vying for a contract of 300 grain wagons.
In an interview Umesh Choudhary, Vice-Chairman, Titagarh Wagons, said that this deal is not a joint venture. This is 100 percent subsidiary that was acquired by the company in France in 2010. Explaining more about Titagarh Fransce, he said, “The French company is into wagons and we are catering to various European countries for their requirement of wagon and using the design and technology from France. We are trying to get into the African market because many of the countries in Africa are francophone, so they use the same specification. As far as metro is concerned, what we are doing in India is we are already manufacturing the electrical multiple units (EMUs) and the passenger coaches. We got into metro refurbishment, we got a contract from Kolkata Metro and we would be attempting to move into the metro and monorail manufacturing”.
The company is very hopeful from the upcoming Railway Budget. Talking about the expectations, he said, “After a considerable period of time we have a decisive government and railway minister who is from the ruling party and person of the stature of the current railway minister. So we are hopeful that there would be certain very forward looking announcements and statements made in the recent Make in India conclave that was held. The presentation that was taken by the honourable Prime Minister three days ago, two or three ministries in their presentation mentioned about the requirement for additional railway infrastructure and in regional wagons”.
He also highlighted the fact that as 40-45 percent of railway’s traffic freight revenues comes from coal, so if coal evacuation goes up, transportation of coal essentially will go up.
Lastly, talking about the supply of wagons and estimate in 2015, he said, “If you look at the planning commission document or Vision 2020 by the railways, the estimated wagon requirement was between 25,000-29,000 wagon whereas the actual procurement on an annualised basis over the last three-four years have been 6,000-7,000 wagons. If the railways do catching up on that requirement then the overall business will grow”.