The industry is laying the foundation for a robust scrappage ecosystem in line with the Voluntary Vehicle Fleet Modernisation program. Sumesh Soman visits the Maruti Suzuki Toyotsu ELV and scrappage unit to assess the on-ground capabilities.

The ‘Voluntary Vehicle Fleet Modernisation’ program notified by the Government of India (GoI) is expected to generate an investment of over Rs.10,000 crore. Expected to aid in building a robust ecosystem, the scheme is targeted at incentivising owners of the old and polluting End-of-Life-Vehicles (ELVs) due for disposal to be replaced with new and cleaner vehicles to curb the Particulate Matter (PM) emissions. For passenger vehicles, it will come into effect by June 2024 and for commercial vehicles by April 2023. Union Minister of Road Transport and Highways (MoRTH), Nitin Gadkari presiding the Maruti Suzuki Toyotsu India Pvt. Ltd. (MSTI) ELV scrapping recycling unit launch at Noida, late last year, had said, “MoRTH has launched the visionary national automobile scrappage policy aimed at creating an ecosystem for phasing out unfit and polluting vehicles from the Indian roads. To meet this objective, we need state-of-the-art scrapping and recycling units.” To boost the scrappage and recycling ecosystem, Maruti Suzuki, Tsusho Group and Toyota India partnered for one such vehicle scrapping and recycling unit at Noida, in Uttar Pradesh back then.

On visit, the 10,993 sq. m. expanse of the facility was found to be capable of scrapping and recycling over 24,000 ELVs on an annual basis. The new unit is equipped with advanced machinery to dismantle and scrap ELVs with precision and is known to be built with an investment of over Rs.44 crores. In line with the mission of attaining self-reliance or building an ‘Atma Nirbhar Bharat’, the equipment used at the facility is manufactured within the country. MSTI aspires to replicate such facilities across the country and this first one is touted as the first of many to come. He further averred, “I would request Maruti and other stakeholders to build and create an ecosystem of similar scrapping and recycling units across the country. This would make the roads safer, air cleaner and the raw material cheaper for their cars.”

According to Kenichi Ayukawa, Chairman, MSTI and Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Maruti Suzuki India Ltd. (MSIL), said, “Hon’ble Minister of Road Transport & Highways, Nitin Gadkari has been a champion for cleaner, greener and safer mobility ecosystem in the country. We are grateful to him for inaugurating our new facility.” “At MSIL, we strongly believe in creating value through efficient resource optimisation and conservation. Our business processes and products are based on the principles of fewer, smaller, lighter, neater and shorter,” he expressed. Ayukawa opined, “Till now there was no scientific, clean and healthy way to dispose off a car at its end-of-life.

MSTI uses a global process methodology to address this gap. This is just the beginning. With our partners we are committed to set up more such modern ELV scrap and recycle centres in India. Through these centres, the customer that brings in their vehicle for scrappage, can avail of a discount on the purchase of a new vehicle. This is made possible by showing the certificate of scrappage at the dealership. Customers will get a certificate of destruction that can be used for de-registration at the Regional Transport Office (RTO) with the pay backs digital, and wired for direct transfer.

Capabilities of the MSTI unit

The facility can scrap 80-100 vehicles in a day and one vehicle is known to take about 200 minutes. It can process about 2000 vehicles per month. MSTI has MSIL own a 50 per cent stake with the rest divided equally between Toyota Tsusho Corporation and Toyota Tsusho India Pvt Ltd. Naoji Saito, Chief Executive Officer for Metal Division of Toyota Tsusho Corporation said, “The Toyota Tsusho group has engaged in the ELV recycling business since 1970, in Japan. Recently we have run the environmental friendly ELV dismantling and recycling business in several major countries of the world. Our experience of over fifty years in Japan helped in these projects.” “Now we will achieve the best practice for ELV recycling and contribute to the circular economy in India by combining our experience and equipment made in India,” he expressed.

A few USPs of the unit are that all the machines are ‘Made-in-India’ besides claims of it being a zero-discharge facility. It is said to be a safe and environment-friendly scrappage unit complete with radioactive material scanning, up to 95 per cent of scrap recovery, and special care for human safety. It also boasts of compliances with GoI laid policies and rules related to vehicle scrappage besides opening up employment opportunities in the area of scrappage and recycling. This JV scrappage unit could prod more companies and OEMs to set up their facilities and units further boosting the ecosystem. One of the big OEMs, Tata Motors is also planning to set up its vehicle scrappage centres under a franchise agreement and the first one could be operational by the first half of this year. This is in addition to the CERO – Mahindra MSTC Recycling Pvt. Ltd. (MMRPL) Mumbai unit, another significant contributor.

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