Coimbatore

Raw material, a major challenge for manufacturers of paper cones, tubes

For the 400 and odd Micro, Small and Medium-scale Enterprises (MSMEs) that make paper cones and tubes in the State, the nationwide lockdown for the last two months has brought about several challenges, threatening their very survival.

M. Ilango, president of Tamil Nadu Paper Cones and Tubes Manufacturers Association, says the question is will the industry manage to revive, and if so, when.

The paper cone and tube producers supply products to spinning, weaving and paper mills, pumpset units and any sector that needs packaging material to protect the product edges. These producers are located mainly in Coimbatore, Erode, Salem, Namakkal, Dindigul, Madurai, Hosur, Rajapalayam, and Tiruppur and largely employ women workers.

K.S. Balamurugan, managing director of KU Sodalamuthu & Co that makes machinery to make the cones and tubes, says the units in Tamil Nadu produce nearly 275 tonnes of tubes and cones. The main raw material for these units are kraft paper and the units consume 700 tonnes of kraft paper board a day.

The paper mills have hiked the prices of raw material, which is up by nearly ₹ 3,000 per tonne, citing shortage of raw material. Availability of kraft paper is also low as the paper mills face labour and raw material shortage.

According to Mr. Ilango, problems started for paper cones and tubes manufacturers from the time of demonetisation. Now, with the lockdown, there is no demand for their products and raw materials are also not available.

With dues pending from their buyers, who are spread across Tamil Nadu, Karnataka, and Andhra Pradesh, they face financial constraints.

The units are not operating at viable capacities and their workers are without jobs.

The paper cones and tubes manufacturers need additional working capital at reduced interest rates, says Mr. Balamurugan.

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Printable version | Jun 6, 2020 7:37:05 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Coimbatore/raw-material-a-major-challenge-for-manufacturers-of-paper-cones-tubes/article31653267.ece

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