Engineering
TUBES & PIPES

Amid increased demand in medium and short term for infrastructure, there are concerns for cheap import from China, pressure on price due to international competition, intermittent E&P activities due oil price volatility, and threat from PVC pipe manufacturers.
The pipe industry's future outlook is bright due to huge proposed government's spending on infrastructure. Water distribution and sewage transport projects will raise demand of DI pipe, Laying cross-country pipeline, national pipeline network, E&P, deep sea drilling will increase demand for seamless and welded pipe. The construction and housing sector will drive demand for ERW pipes.

Despite prospects there are problems. Though there is steady demand from oil pipeline replacement and capacity enhancement activities, fluctuations of oil price in international market will
reduce Exploration and Prospecting (E&P) activities. For too high a price, the E&P will slow down to reduce risk; too low a price will subdue oil production from marginal oil fields.

There is also threat from substitute products. Pipe manufacturers are facing competition from PVC pipe manufacturers, especially in agricultural sector.

Currently, competition from international players are putting pressure on price and profitability. Since around 80% of cost of pipe production is due to raw material, the companies will need to produce value
added products, to improve profitability and increase competitiveness in international market.

To enhance technological competencies, Indian companies are entering into JV with international partners. MSL already formed JV with Hydril Corp, US (now Tenaris) for manufacturing premium threads for precision, high quality pipes with better price realisation. Indian Seamless acquired Stucto Hydraulics, Europe's one of the largest manufacturers of cold drawn, skived and roller burnished tubes and components for hydraulic cylinder industry.