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Metal Casting Technologies : September 2006
CONTRIBUTORS hat do you think of the new look for the magazine? I am referring, of course, to the use of Chinese characters for selected articles. This is not a completely new thing for us as we have tinkered with it a little bit in the past, but it does represent a significant change. It has been our aim (stated on several occasions) to present a magazine that serves to update the castings industry in new technology, market information and features which provide an educative base for foundries. The magazine now enjoys a growing respect and distribution in the Asia Pacific region. And the introduction of the Chinese language is to further reinforce this growth. This issue is the Annual Regional Overview with the major feature on China. Can you think of a more important player in the world casting industry now than China? Consider their impact right now. Not only are the Chinese foundries the benchmark for low cost casting supplies, but China is THE major player in the supply of raw materials to foundries everywhere. For years, the foundries in Australia have been lamenting the fact that they are losing business to Chinese imports. Now, I am starting to hear the same laments from foundrymen in Southeast Asia. Now there is a change! I have one particular friend who is a foundry owner/operator in Malaysia. He started in the foundry industry at exactly the same time that I started in the industry (you know, way back when...). So in effect, we have virtually grown up together in the regional industry. The impact of China on his business has been significant lately, while Malaysian operating costs continue to rise. What has he done about it? Without giving away any secrets, he has embraced the situation rather than avoid it. He often goes to China for various reasons and he seems to always be coming out of there with a new wrinkle that he can apply to his business. How do Australians see China? During the last AFI conference in Sydney, I was chairing a technical session marveling at the Power Point demonstration a lecturer was using for his presentation. I started thinking about the early days of my participation in the conventions' technical sessions (overhead projectors, flip charts, slide projectors, etc) and my thoughts leapt off on a tangent to China. The first AFI Convention I ever attended was in 1981 in Queenstown in New Zealand. I tried to recall even one mention of China in any context made during that convention. I could think of none. Yet today, there would hardly be a single paper presented at any convention in the world where EDITORIAL Ken Foulke W www.metals.rala.com.au 4 ELIUS LEVIN is a native-born Australian business journalist who has lived in China for 12 years. He has worked as an editor and writer throughout the past 20+ years, and professionally since 1989. MIKE ALSTON is the Chairman of Casting Technology NZ Inc and served the foundry industry in various technical, sales and management roles over 29 years. GORDON FELLER writes regularly about the metals industry. He is based in China and travels throughout Asia JOHN HERMES D. BAUTISTA PMAI Technical Consultant GOPAL PADKI CEO Foseco China Has 22-years experience in the foundry industry, in particular India, Taiwan, Hong Kong and Mainland China DR PC MAITY Professor in the Foundry Technology Department of the National Institute of Foundry and Forge Technology in Ranchi India JOHN PEARCE Metals Specialist, MTEC National Metals and Materials Technology Centre, Thailand JEFF F. MEREDITH Casting Solutions Pty Ltd Greetings, once again