POST TIME: 2 July, 2018 00:00 00 AM / LAST MODIFIED: 2 July, 2018 01:03:38 AM
Automotive battery market now worth Tk 6,000cr as demand spirals

Automotive battery market now worth Tk 6,000cr as demand spirals

The size of the automotive battery market reached around Tk 6,000 crore last year, with demand growing at a fast clip. The popularity of battery-run rickshaws and easy bikes, hybrid and electric cars, in particular, has gone up in the past five years.

Year on year, the market size is increasing at an average growth of nearly 20–25 per cent since 2013, said industry insiders.

The demand has increased because of the popularity of easy bikes and battery-run rickshaws, said Munawar Misbah Moin, the president of the Bangladesh Accumulator and Battery Manufacturers' Association. The demand for industrial batteries, used in sectors such as telecom and solar, has also risen, he observed.

Chinese-made locally assembled and manufactured batteries have also entered the market, accounting for 50 per cent of the demand, he said. Local demand has almost doubled in the past five years, he added.

“At present, Bangladesh exports batteries worth USD 40–50 million to around 60 countries. In future, we will have the capacity to meet the global demand of USD 1 to 2 billion,” he said.

The government is giving 15 per cent cash incentives to exporters at the moment, he said.

According to him, the rate of illegal recycling of batteries has gone up and that is the biggest threat to the business at present.

ATM Mustafa, managing director of Hamko Battery, told The Independent, “We manufacture three types of batteries—batteries for instant power supply (IPS), commercial vehicle batteries and batteries for passenger car segments. Because of easy bike and battery-run rickshaws, our sales have increased to 10 per cent compared to last year. Industry growth has increased to 20–25 per cent over the past five years.”

“We have seen that the demand for hybrid cars is increasing in the Bangladeshi market but no company can manufacture their batteries at this moment. The battery comes along with the car,” he said.

Sales of conventional car batteries would go down in future because the technology is changing and the use of hybrid cars would increase, he noted. That is the biggest market threat in the future, he felt.

Hybrid cars discharge less carbon emissions and are not harmful for the environment. Which is why the government has allowed the imports of second-hand hybrid cars from this fiscal year and slashed the supplementary duty. But Bangladesh has not built any technology yet such that it can make hybrid batteries locally, he added. “We sometimes import batteries for motorcycles from abroad,” he also said.