Quality Control on Car and Bike Wheel Rims from Friday

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The centre will curb the import of substandard car and bike wheels come Friday as it implements the quality control order for automobile rims. The move comes with riders as some manufacturers are being allowed to import limited quantities of non-Bureau of Indian Standards (BIS) compliant wheel rims after the latest amendment to the quality control order. According to official data, China and Germany are the largest suppliers of the commodity to the country. While China’s exports are higher by number, Germany’s supplies to India surpassed by value.

“Quality control norms of wheel rims for two and four wheelers have been tightened. The order will be implemented from December 22,” Joint Secretary, Ministry of Heavy Industries, Hanif Qureshi told ET.

According to the World Trade Organisation, the quality control order on automobile wheel rims covers imports under the Harmonised System (HS) Code for road wheels and parts, accessories. India’s imports under this head stood at Rs 375.42 crore in the April-October months of the current fiscal, 10.61% higher than Rs 339.39 crore in the comparable period of the previous one.

Germany’s exports in this segment stood at Rs 110.44 crore till October in the current fiscal while imports from China were at Rs 90.15 crore. But China exported 26.12 lakh and Germany 13.63 lakh units to India in the months under review.

“India has ample domestic suppliers of automobile wheel rims. Certifications have also been issued to compliant players that export to India,” a senior government official said while adding that BIS officials were unable to provide certification to Chinese companies due to COVID-19 related restrictions.

The compliance certificate is issued to eligible manufacturers after field visits by BIS representatives. Once an importer receives a consignment from a BIS certified manufacturer, government officials verify the goods at the Indian port before they can be sold in the domestic market.Under the fresh relaxations, car and bike makers can import some non-BIS compliant wheel rims for various purposes such as repairs or after sales service purposes, Research and Development (R&D), and manufacturing.The quality control norms were initially proposed in 2020 and were to be enforced from September 2021. But the date of implementation was pushed ahead multiple times as the exporters and domestic industry expressed inability to get BIS certification in the proposed timeframe.

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