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Will only price-based competition in the geosynthetics market damage Russian infrastructures?

Geosynthetics

Maccaferri specialists raised vital questions on import substitution at the “Geosynthetics in Road Construction” Conference

Recently, 2016 MAXConference held the 1st International Conference “Geosynthetics in Road Construction” in Moscow. MAXConference is an independent organizer of industry conferences and seminars. MAXConference has been active in the market of conference services since 2010. The Conference was supported by Maccaferri, STARCO, TENSAR, Miakom, Terre Armée, NEW GROUND, Machina-TST, Fibertex, HUESKER, KARL MAYER and Mashteximpex.

More than 80 delegates from Russia, Germany, Italy, the Czech Republic and Belarus shared their experience in road design and construction using geosynthetics. The event was attended by representatives of road building companies, design organizations, customers, manufacturers and suppliers of geosynthetics, regulators, testing centers and laboratories.

Liya Potudanskaya, Head of Geosynthetics Conference Section, delivered a report — “Technical Regulation in Geosynthetics Production and Application. Development Prospects for the Domestic Market of Geosynthetics” — during the first session of the event. In her speech, Liya reflected major issues of geosynthetics import substitution.

Currently, there are a lot of new products available on the market, that are manufactured by special technology, from a variety of raw materials and with variable compliance with the operational requirements. There are some special regulations developed, that specify conditions for geosynthetics uses and requirements to them. A major factor to determine whether a geosynthetic material will function as required are its properties, i.e. its mechanical, hydraulic and operational performance in a particular soil where it will be applied.

However, we are experiencing a paradoxical situation: the number of infrastructure facilities with super short life cycles is continuously increasing, while common logic tells us that the lifetime should increase as the market is developing and the number of geosynthetics producers is growing.

Today’s core problem is that both the contractor and the customer are actually trying to save money and purchasing cheaper products that do not meet technical requirements. Contractors, paying no attention to project documentation, independently replace one material to another. However, it is crucial to consider both the type of polymer, from which the material is manufactured, its performance characteristics, and the soil properties at the construction site.

Often, unscrupulous suppliers, in their effort to win in price competition, improperly inflate the characteristics of supplied products. That is the way inappropriate geomaterials make to construction sites, which leads to a significant reduction of an infrastructure facility service life as compared to the planned figures. This is something we can describe as an “infrastructural dumping” that, however, will reflect in additional expenses in the future in order to replace/repair weak constructions.

A common objective for geosynthetics manufacturers in Russia is to civilize the market. Maccaferri applies European technologies that are well established on the Russian market and carefully select raw materials.

The company actively participates in the import substitution program as all its products are made in the Russian Federation. The manufacturing of gabion mesh started the ball rolling, and in 3.5 years the company opened a geosynthetics plant. Today, when you pronounce the name “Maccaferri”, please do not hesitate — this is about high-quality products.

Please contact us and we will gladly help you to select geosynthetic materials.

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