​​‘Balanced and Adaptive Agreement to be designed to strengthen the EPC Projects’, Dr SK Joshi

Hyderabad: Confederation of Indian Industry, organized a National Conference on ‘Engineering, Procurement and Construction, focusing on ‘Enhancing Field Productivity, Safety & Quality’, here today.

The objective of the conference is to create a platform for top minds from various facets of the industry to discuss, collaborate and share ideas and insights reiterating the need for adoption of digital and innovative models for sustainable and safe world class infrastructure.

Dr S K Joshi, IAS, Special Chief Secretary, Irrigation and CAD Department, Government of Telangana, in his keynote address emphasised on the need to have a balanced and adaptive agreement between the Government and the EPC contractors, which will help in completing time-bound mega infrastructure and Irrigation projects. “CII must work with the Stakeholders to design such an approach”, he said.

The Special Chief Secretary opined that there is immense requirement for quality infrastructure. Convenience and Cost effectiveness are critical for public projects like Irrigation and roads. “From the perspective of the Government it is important to complete a mega EPC project within the political cycle”, he said.

Mr Vinayak Deshpande, Chairman, CII National Conference on EPC & Managing Director, Tata Projects Ltd., in his welcome address, briefed about transformation and consolidation happening in EPC companies. He urged the EPC companies to enhance field productivity. “In my opinion, to be future-ready, one of the key elements to accelerate India’s infra growth is to adopt state-of-art technologies and cutting-edge technological innovations. To be the best in the world, we would require to invest in – latest design & engineering techniques, modern methods of speedier and quality construction, IT driven project and construction management, and efficient and productivity driven skilled workforce”, he said.

Mr Deshpande also emphasised on various global technologies that could be of importance to the EPC Sector. “There have been many advances in the Global market which can be suitably adopted in India. Design using 3D, BIMS for clash detection, efficient software for integrated project monitoring and execution, IT driven logistics for speed, IOT & Cloud based computing, precast and prefab, to name a few”, he said.

Dr Ken Choudhary, President Asia Pacific Operations, Energy and Chemicals, Fluor, in his special address, opined that the structure of mega projects are extremely complex and are sustained on the four pillars of manpower, materials, machinery and money. “Lack of skilled workforce is a major issue for a vibrant EPC Sector. Also greater attention must be given to people and planning, which will lead to better workforce and quality”, he said.

Mr Manish Chandra, Accenture Strategy, in his address, talked about various challenges of the EPC sector and opined that the fall in the operating margins is one of the biggest problem, which need to be addressed. “60% of mega projects are either over budgeted or behind schedule. In order to address this issue, the EPC companies must take out non-working money out of the system and invest it in new technology, especially digital technology, and growth aspects”, he said.

Mr Rajiv Reddy, Co-Chairman, Smart Cities Task Force, CII Telangana & Vice President, Gayatri Projects Ltd., delivered the concluding remarks and emphasised the need for a collaborative approach to address various issues in planning and execution.

The Conference was attended by around 200 EPC contractors representing various infra companies across the country. The conference had focused sessions on – digital technology for EPC, challenges in innovation, EHS & Reliability, Contract Management and Dispute Resolution and few case studies.