The prices of ceramic tiles is expected to go up on the back of some of the recent developments. The National Green Tribunal recently ordered the shutdown of all ceramic units running on coal gasifiers. As many as 550 out of the 1,000 odd manufacturing units operational in the Morbi region of Gujarat currently run on coal gasifiers. These ceramic tile manufacturers have been given an option to switch to LNG / PNG to continue their operations.
The ceramic industry is also facing a challenge on the procurement of key ingredients – soda and potash feldspar. Rajasthan which was the key supplier of these materials has recently banned the supply of these materials in chip form and now allows this only in powder form. In powder form, the vitrified tile manufacturers will not be able to remove the impurities required for production of vitrified and ceramic tiles.
The overall effect will increase the ceramic production cost by 15% and will directly affect the exports. Due to the closure of some plants, the production has already come down by 60-70%.