MRF sets up retreading factory in Salalah
An undisputed leader in tyre making in India, MRF (Madras Rubber Factory) chose Salalah the best location for a retreading factory in Oman. The factory opened yesterday under the auspices of Abdullah bin Salim Mahad al Rawas, Head of Oman Chamber of Commerce (OCCI) branch in the Governorate of Dhofar.

With an initial production capacity of 1,500 tyres for 10-tonne and above trucks and tractors, the factory has expandable capacity of more than 3,000 tyres per month. With this Oman now has nine retreading factories of different brands.

A technical and sales delegation of MRF comprising Imbraj, Senior Manager Export Sales; P Bakhthavathsalam, Assistant Manager Technical; and Prakash Hulji of MRF's Dubai branch, came to Salalah to mark the launch of the factory.

The factory will work under Al Aetifaq United Trading & Contracting Co LLC having its partners Dr Anwar Mohammed Abdul Aziz al Rawas (Chairman), Shaikh Salim Abdullah Salim al Rawas (Dy Chairman), Manpreet Singh (CEO and Managing Director), Khalid Abdullah al Rawas (Director) and Preetinder Kaur (Director).

Terming this to be a landmark occasion for MRF's retreaded tyres in Oman, Imbraj listed many benefits of retreaded tyres in terms of cost cutting, environment protection and safety without any compromise with quality.

"New tyre is new tyre. We do not compare retreaded tyre with a new tyre. But what we are offering here is 85 per cent mileage, which is only 15 per cent less than the new one, and these tyres are available only at 25 or 30 per cent price of a new tyre," he said while commenting on economic value of the product.

Moreover, about 22 gallons of petroleum product is used in making one new tyre. This can easily be curtailed by going for retreaded tyres. "There may not be crisis of petroleum products in oil producing, still lot of oil can be saved and a country can create favourable balance of trade importing less number of tyres," he said.

Commenting on global practice and reliability of retreaded tyres, Imbraj said: "Retreaded tyres are used worldwide in countries like USA, UK, Australia, Malaysia, India etc. Retreaded tyres are even used in aircrafts like Emirates Airline, Etihad etc and they are legally approved worldwide. Retread factories in Oman follow GCC standards and have its license issued by Industrial City, Chamber of Commerce and Municipality."

Retreading is a process that provides tyres with a second life by giving a new tread to a worn tyre. The worn tread is buffed away and a new tread is bonded to the tyre casing. The techniques are similar to the manufacturing of a new tyre ie bonding a new tread through the application of heat and pressure for a predetermined time.

Commenting on its environmental aspect, Imbraj said: "Retreads are environment friendly. Retreading is a recycling process and in one way helps preserve and sustain our environment.

Tyres are basically petro-chemical products. It takes approximately 22 gallons of oil to manufacture one new truck tyre. Most of the oil is found in the casing, which is reused in the retreading process. As a result, it takes only approximately 7 gallons of oil to produce a retread.

Wide based truck tires save even more fuel. A medium-sized fleet using only 500 tyres a year would therefore help save more than 27,500 liters of oil annually. In addition, the disposal of casings in landfills is considerably reduced. So retreads are in fact recycled tyres that conserve oil and make a positive contribution to sustainable development."

The MRF delegation assured about the safety of the retreaded tyres and said: "Retreaded tyres are manufactured to high standards, using highly sophisticated machinery.

There is no doubt that professionally-made retreads are as safe as new tyres. With lower production costs than new tyres, retreads have a purchase price that is normally between 25 per cent and 50 per cent lower than comparable new tyres. By using retreads you will get virtually new performance for around less than half the cost."

The delegation members lauded Salalah's strategic location for trade and business and said: "With Port of Salalah's (PoS) extensive network and logistic facilities, Salalah's stores immense trade and business potential."

© Oman Daily Observer 2014

MRF sets up retreading factory in Salalah