Anders Kongstad, technical director at Flexo Wash

In a global print market that is becoming more competitive by the minute, compliance to internationally recognized standards that certify performance has become a necessity. “We have been building machines that are ATEX compliant for more than 10 years, so we can comment from a position of authority,” said Anders Kongstad, technical director at Flexo Wash. An acronym for ‘Atmospheric Explosion’, ATEX is a reminder of how potentially dangerous the solvents and flammable liquids that are used in the printing process can be.

Kongstad said, “At Flexo Wash, we aim to de-mystify ATEX compliance—it is not as complex and difficult, and by working with qualified partners, converters can be assured of a system that meets current as well as future legislative requirements. It’s all about customer support.”

So, what constitutes an ATEX compliant room? It is all about risk control and safety. The room generally comprises a washing machine, distiller, LEL control, light, house installations and a ventilation system. Contrary to popular belief, it does not need to be fully enclosed on all four sides, as long as measures are in place to contain any potential explosive situation. All the equipment in the room has to be designed and suitable to be placed in the potentially hazardous environment, in order to make the room safe.

Packaging South Asia — resilient, growing and impactful — daily, monthly — always responsive

The multi-channel B2B in print and digital 17-year-old platform matches the industry’s growth trajectory. The Indian, South Asian, Southeast Asian, and Middle East packaging industries are looking beyond the resilience of the past three years. They are resuming capacity expansion and diversification, with high technology and automation in new plants and projects.

As we present our 2024 publishing plan, India’s real GDP growth for the financial year ending 31 March 2024 will exceed 6%. The packaging industry growth will match the GDP growth in volume terms and surpass it by at least 3% in terms of nominal growth allowing for price inflation in energy, raw materials, consumables, and capital equipment.

The capacity for flexible film manufacturing in India increased by 45% over the past four years. With orders in place, we expect another 20% capacity addition in 2024 and 2025. Capacities in monocartons, corrugation, aseptic liquid packaging, and labels are growing similarly. As the consumption story returns over the next six months, we expect demand to return and exceed the growth trajectory of previous years. The numbers are positive for most of the economies in the region – and as shown by our analytics, our platform increasingly reaches and influences these.

For responsible and sustainable packaging, with its attendant regulations and compliances, there is significant headroom to grow in India and the region. Our coverage includes the entire packaging supply chain – from concept to shelf and to waste collection, sorting, and recycling.

We target brand owners, product managers, raw material suppliers, packaging designers and converters, and recyclers. This is a large and complex canvas – the only thing that can work is your agile thinking and innovation together with our continuous learning and persistence.

The coming year looks to be an up year in this region, and this is the right time to plan your participation and marketing communication – in our rich and highly targeted business platform with human resources on the ground. Share your thoughts and plans to inspire and mobilize our editorial and advertising teams!

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– Naresh Khanna (25 October 2023)

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