SIAM in collaboration with ACMA and Germany’s VDA organises conference on Safer & Sustainable Road Transportation

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New Delhi, 21 November, 2018: Society of Indian Automobile Manufacturers (SIAM), the apex national body representing the Indian automobile sector, in collaboration with Automotive Component Manufacturers Association of India (ACMA) and Germany-based VDA (Verband der Automobilindustrie), organised a conference on Safer & Sustainable Road Transportation in New Delhi today.

Earlier, in his opening remarks Mr Vishnu Mathur, Director General, SIAM said Indian automotive sector has made great strides in terms of providing safety and Indian two-wheeler Industry will further enhance its safety features.

In his welcome address, Mr Marius Ochel, Head of Indo-German Association Partnership Program VDA, Germany said he strongly supports SIAM and ACMA’s initiative on safer and sustainable road transportation, which is key to development of the sector.

Mr Vishwajit Sahay, Joint Secretary, Department of Heavy Industry, Ministry of Heavy Industry & Public Enterprises, Government of India, stated that the forum must focus on discussing and working out issues related to safety and sustainability of the sector, which is important as it will create a firm ground for the future of automotive industry in India. “There are many areas where we seek to closely work in coordination with Germany like electric mobility, connected vehicles, traffic management, amongst others,” Mr Sahay asserted.

Mr Stefan Schlarp, First Secretary, Head of Section Transport and Digital Infrastructure, Embassy of the Federal Republic of Germany, New Delhi mentioned that India is a fast growing market in automobile sector and so it becomes necessary to implement modern safety systems, which are meaningful and important. “Traffic control management is an important aspect. Our researchers are contributing significantly in minimising accidents,” Mr Schlarp explained.

Mr Abhay Damle, Joint Secretary, Ministry of Road Transport & Highways, Government of India stated that safety is one of the most important areas for the government. “By April 2019, two wheelers will stand out for having the best quality standards in the world. We are also working on collecting GPS-based data, which will be a real time accident data-base,” he explained. He also informed that the Indian Government is working on scrappage policy for End-of-Life Vehicles with the help of SIAM and would soon complete consultation with the states in this regard.

“This will give a big boost to the industry. There are immediate challenges on safety in regards to zero emission and electric vehicles and there is lot of scope for improvement in commercial vehicles to reduce fuel consumption,” he pointed out. He also suggested that e-rickshaws in Delhi could have adaptable auto-sensors.

Mr Deepak Sawkar, Sr. Vice President, Maruti Suzuki & Co-Chairman, SIAM CMVR & Safety Group who spoke at the session on safety, mentioned India as a unique country with heterogeneous transportation facilities and called for solutions.

Prof Dr Ing Claudia Langowsky, Head of VDA, FAT (The Research Association of Automotive Technology gave in-depth analysis and overview of it while emphasising on the need of research groups as well as work groups.

Similarly, Mr Henrik Liers, Managing Director, VuFo GmbH while deliberating on Accident Research/GIDAS (German In-Depth Accident Study) highlighted issues related to safer, cleaner and sustainable transportation solutions for automobiles, pedestrians and bicyclists.

Mr Heiko Bürkle, Mercedes Benz, Germany gave his presentation  on optimization of Car Concepts (based on German in-depth Accident Study, GIDAS) talked about how GIDAS is being used to ensure safety measures in vehicles through integral safety approach and called for making roads safer for everyone.

Mr Praveen Bansode, Head-Safety CoE at Mahindra & Mahindra spoke on Accident data based development for Vehicular Safety, Evolution of Accident Research in India leading to Safer Mobility. He emphasized on the need for vehicular safety and urged for a collaborative approach among stakeholders, in order to prevent accidents.

Mr Girikumar V Kumaresh, Senior Architect – Accident Research, Robert Bosch Engineering & Business Solution Ltd called for actions to achieve common goals, which includes safety on Indian roads and the safety of pedestrians. “We need to adopt the Principle of Autonomous Emergency Braking (AEB) for Pedestrian Protection,” he pointed out.

During another session on Sustainability, the speakers focus on sustainability along the whole vehicle life cycle which includes production, operation, scrapping and recycling. The session chairman Captain (Retired) N S Mohanram, Advisor, TVS Motors & Chairman, SIAM Recycling Group spoke on an urgent need to evolve environmentally feasible, socially acceptable and economically viable recycling methods for automobiles.

Mr Navin Paul, Managing Director, Sunbeam Auto Ltd, Mr Navin Paul informed about the shift towards a sustainable approach in the Automobile Industry, with industry looking towards a sustainable vision of future with focus on the renewable sources of energy.

Mr Thomas Sewald, Head of Corporate Environment, Continental AG speaking on Plastic avoidance and recycling informed on sustainability in the Mexican Supply Chain model that intends to improve energy management performance. He said this is crucial as the amount of plastic waste is increasing globally year by year, creating environmental hazards.

Mr Sanjay Khare, Board Member & Vice President-Safety & Environment, Volkswagen India emphasized on the need to bring sustainability in production of  vehicles and focus more on innovations, alternatives and business models for low carbon manufacturing.

Mr Prashant K Banerjee, Executive Director (Technical), SIAM moderated the panel discussion on Safety and Sustainability Approaches in India and Germany. Each panelists identified priority recommendations namely Environmental and Propulsion Performance Requirements (EPPR), ensuring instant data record features on vehicles, supply chain management and action for sustainability, working on behavioural patience on roads and collaboration to gain support from other countries, which will help in learning process and learn from mistakes. Panellists also suggested on making data more acceptable and harmonizing the data automobiles globally besides calling for campaign on code of conduct to make it a success.

The participants included Mr Sujeet Sammadar, Senior Consultant , NITI Aayog,  Mr Sitikantha Padhy, Manager, Accident Data Analysis Center, NATRiP, Mr Thomas Sewald, Head of Corporate Environment, Continental AG, Mr Hendrik Liers, Mr Heiko Burkle and Mr Ramashankar Pandey, Managing Director, Hella India Lighting Ltd.

About SIAM
The Society of Indian Automobile Manufacturers (SIAM) is a not-for-profit apex national body representing all major vehicle and vehicular engine manufacturers in India. SIAM works towards supporting sustainable development of the Indian Automobile Industry with the vision that India emerges as the destination of choice in the world for design and manufacture of automobiles. It also works towards facilitating enhancement of the competitiveness of the Indian Automobile Industry, reducing cost of vehicles, increasing productivity and achieving global standards of quality.