Ludhiana printers bagged top awards

10 awards at the National Awards for Excellence in Printing

The NAEP award-winning printers from Ludhiana.

The Offset Printers’ Association (OPA) recently organized a felicitation ceremony at Mahiya, Solan, in Himachal Pradesh for printers of Ludhiana who bagged 10 awards – four Gold, three Silver, and three certificates of merit – at the National Awards for Excellence in Printing (NAEP) organized by the All India Federation of Master Printers (AIFMP). 

This coveted recognition for the Indian Print fraternity is supported by the government of India and is considered one of the highest honors for any printer in India.

Speaking on the occasion, Kamal Mohan Chopra, president of the World Print and Communication Forum (WPCF) said, India represents one of the largest commercial printing markets in the Asia-Pacific region. Congratulating the award-winning printers, he said, “Over decades, Ludhiana’s printing industry has stood the test of time and evolved to become modern and digitally enabled.” 

Thanking the government of Punjab, Chopra added, “With the thrust on paper-based packaging units, I am sure that Ludhiana will become a hub for printing and packaging in the northern belt.” 

Art World Printers, Big Byte, and Jain Packwell got one Gold each; New Sharma Screen Maker bagged one Gold and one certificate of merit; Active Print and Transfers got two Silver; Shiva Print Bazar one Silver; and Swastik Packo Printer and Yuvraaj Enterprises bagged one certificate of merit each. 

Gagandeep Singh, vice-president of OPA, presented a memento on the behalf of the association to all the printers. 

2023 promises an interesting ride for print in India

Indian Printer and Publisher founded in 1979 is the oldest B2B trade publication in the multi-platform and multi-channel IPPGroup. While the print and packaging industries have been resilient in the past 33 months since the pandemic lockdown of 25 March 2020, the commercial printing and newspaper industries have yet to recover their pre-Covid trajectory.

The fragmented commercial printing industry faces substantial challenges as does the newspaper industry. While digital short-run printing and the signage industry seem to be recovering a bit faster, ultimately their growth will also be moderated by the progress of the overall economy. On the other hand book printing exports are doing well but they too face several supply-chain and logistics challenges.

The price of publication papers including newsprint has been high in the past year while availability is diminished by several mills shutting down their publication paper and newsprint machines in the past four years. Indian paper mills are also exporting many types of paper and have raised prices for Indian printers. To some extent, this has helped in the recovery of the digital printing industry with its on-demand short-run and low-wastage paradigm.

Ultimately digital print and other digital channels will help print grow in a country where we are still far behind in our paper and print consumption and where digital is a leapfrog technology that will only increase the demand for print in the foreseeable future. For instance, there is no alternative to a rise in textbook consumption but this segment will only reach normality in the next financial year beginning on 1 April 2023.

Thus while the new normal is a moving target and many commercial printers look to diversification, we believe that our target audiences may shift and change. Like them, we will also have to adapt with agility to keep up with their business and technical information needs.

Our 2023 media kit is ready, and it is the right time to take stock and reconnect with your potential markets and customers. Print is the glue for the growth of liberal education, new industry, and an emerging economy. We seek your participation in what promises to be an interesting ride.

– Naresh Khanna

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