HomeIndiaFirst: Government invites private companies to export, manufacture forged wheels for high-speed...

First: Government invites private companies to export, manufacture forged wheels for high-speed trains

With an aim to eventually end India’s import-dependence for its need for forged wheels, the Railways has finally decided to build a plant that will manufacture around 80,000 wheels to be used in high-speed trains and Link Hoffmann Busch coaches. .

railway Minister ashwini vaishnav The plant will be set up by a private player under an assured off-take contract with the Railways in which the Railways will buy 80,000 wheels for Rs 600 crore per annum, it said on Friday.

According to the tender notice, the plant has to supply wheels worth 6.5 lakh tonnes to the Railways for the next 20 years.

Vaishnav said this is the first time that the Railways has floated a tender inviting private companies to build forged wheel plants and make wheels for high-speed trains in India.

“We have been importing forged wheels from European countries since 1960. Now we have decided to do manufacturing and exporting.

Railways require about 2 lakh forged wheels per year, most of which are imported. As per the plan, Steel Authority of India Limited’s Rashtriya Ispat Nigam Limited will provide a portion of the wheels, with the rest being provided by the proposed “Make in India” plant. These wheels are required in Vande Bharat train sets.

Vaishnav said the tender would be awarded on the condition that the plant would also be an exporter of wheels and the market would be Europe.

At present, railways imports major part of its wheels from countries like Ukraine, Germany and the Czech Republic. Delays in procurement due to the war in Ukraine have prompted the railways to find a solution closer to home.

Railways pays around Rs 70,000 per wheel for importing these and generally these wheels last for about four-five years.

“We are now coming up with a Make-in-India track agreement within a month, in which very high powered tracks will also be made in the country,” he said.

In May, the railways awarded a contract to a Chinese company to supply 39,000 Vande Bharat train wheels worth Rs 170 crore as deliveries from other countries were affected due to the Russo-Ukraine war.

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