Print and packaging continue to mirror the positive economic growth of the country. Excellence, efficiency, sustainability, and compliance are being seen as opportunities – as are exports and globalization as essential components of growth and scale. Photo Bench Accounting on Unslash

In his Business Standard column on 30 December 2023, TN Ninan ruminates on the past quarter century and the next quarter century. His context is the Goldman Sachs forecast at the beginning of the century, “That [the] four emerging ‘Brics’ economies (Brazil, Russia, India, and China) would grow to eventually match and overtake what at the time were the world’s six biggest economies, namely, the US, Japan, Germany, France, and Italy (the G6). That forecast has proved right on the broad direction of change, but little else.”

Goldman identified four factors underpinning the performance of the Brics – macroeconomic stability, openness to global trade and investment, strong institutions, and education. Ninan writes that India performed closest to the forecast – its economy has almost trebled relative to the combined G6 economies from 2.4% to 8.4%. He says India has delivered on all four categories with room for improvement on a couple, but it has scored the best in terms of political stability. While both China and India have done well with China moving into a league of its own, it is approaching maturity and its growth rate is slowing although still better than the global growth rate. “Looking ahead to the second quarter of the century, expect broadly more of the same, with India gaining prominence,” he adds.

As one of the most outspoken and balanced observers and business columnists in the country, Ninan has frequently discussed immediate and nearby events as well as long-term perspectives. It behooves us to look not just at the quarter-century prospects of the economy but also at what we are facing and can expect in the next year or couple of years. Our interactions with the printing, packaging, and consumer product industry reveal that they are focused on their current challenges and optimistic about overcoming them.

Vinay Kaushal of printing and packaging machinery distributor Provin Technos, says, “Following the years of Covid-19, the second half of 2023 came as a big relief with a great upsurge in the Indian printing industry. This led to the influx of a good number of new machine installations, although the capacity increase requirements were dampened by the still hampered global supply chain that led to price increases and longer shipment times. Nevertheless, we made significant gains this year in both the sheetfed offset and digital segments.

Moreover, the upsurge continues, and at this moment we are looking at 2024 very positively. If there is no extraordinary disturbance on the external front, we expect growth in the book publishing segment to continue for some years to come. We also expect significant investments in the packaging and label segments. As we add two new verticals in the coming year, our expansion plans are in place and expected to add to our bottom line.”

Priyatosh Kumar, head of Fujifilm India’s Graphic Communications and Device Technology business states, “The Fujifilm Graphics business has seen significant traction in CY 2023. All lines of products, analog as well as digital, have seen consistent high growth. Commensurate with the growing Indian economy, there is an increase in the overall demand for printing services. Changing customer behavior in some segments of printing is leading towards more digitalization. With our unique cross-section of digital and analog products that can holistically cater to market requirements, we strongly feel the current momentum shall continue.”

Jagdeep Hira, Business head at Pakka says, “In 2023, global governments addressed plastic packaging concerns through regulations, impacting India’s food and beverage packaging industry.

Throughout 2023, Global governments have proactively addressed public apprehensions regarding plastic packaging waste by enacting regulations aimed at curbing environmental impact and enhancing waste management practices. This shift towards stringent regulations is poised to significantly impact the food and beverage packaging industry in India. Consequently, there is a growing emphasis on eco-friendly and sustainable packaging solutions, reflecting a broader trend towards environmental responsibility.

Looking ahead, 2024 is poised to be characterized by innovation and research spearheading the industry’s evolution, particularly with the integration of bio-materials derived from renewable resources. Pakka is strategically placing research and innovation at the core of its product development initiatives, fostering the creation of an array of sustainable and compostable packaging products. The company’s global expansion into Guatemala reflects its commitment to serve diverse audiences worldwide with excellence.”

Thus, print and packaging continue to mirror the positive economic growth of the country. Excellence, efficiency, sustainability, and compliance are being seen as opportunities – as are exports and globalization as essential components of growth and scale. As Ninan writes in his column, India is likely to remain the fastest growing of the four Brics countries in the next quarter century!

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!

For editorial — for advertisement and for subscriptions

– Naresh Khanna (25 October 2023)

Subscribe Now
unnamed 1


Subscribe to our Newsletter

Previous articleKuraray’s EVAL for food packaging industry
Next articleBrand security with quality certificate feature — Aashirvaad
Naresh Khanna
Editor of Indian Printer and Publisher since 1979 and Packaging South Asia since 2007. Trained as an offset printer and IBM 360 computer programmer. Active in the movement to implement Indian scripts for computer-aided typesetting. Worked as a consultant and trainer to the Indian print and newspaper industry. Visiting faculty of IDC at IIT Powai in the 1990s. Also founder of IPP Services, Training and Research and has worked as its principal industry researcher since 1999. Author of book: Miracle of Indian Democracy. Elected vice-president of the International Packaging Press Organization in May 2023.


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here