Moulds Event 2021 What is the secret of the success of Portuguese mould makers?

From Alexander Stark

Portugal — The Portuguese mould making industry has been growing and consolidating its market position as No. 8 in the world in the past years. One of the secrets to the success of the industry is its willingness to cooperate, a visit to this year's Moulds Event revealed.

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The Moulds Event adressed the challenges of the Portuguese and European mould making industry.
The Moulds Event adressed the challenges of the Portuguese and European mould making industry.
(Source: Pool-Net)

Portugal is one of the world’s leading manufacturers of moulds, particularly in the area of injection moulds for plastics, where it is positioned as No. 8 worldwide and 3rd in Europe. A staggering 85 percent of total production is exported and all major European car manufacturers rely on moulds made in Portugal. What makes the country's mould making industry so successful? The answer might surprise some!Apart from the innovative spirit of the many SMEs it's their willingness to not only face competition but also to cooperate. Exchanging common experiences and finding a strategy for maintaining the mould making sector in Europe, were also on top of the list at the recent Moulds Event, organised late November by Pool-Net, a Portuguese cluster organization with around 100 member companies, together with Cefamol, Portugal's National Association of the Mouldmaking Industry and Centimfe,a non-profit Public Utility institution.

Moulds for car parts are a speciality of Portuguese manufacturers.
Moulds for car parts are a speciality of Portuguese manufacturers.
(Source: Pool-Net)

During the Moulds Event, the Open Days took also place between 23 and 25 November. Within the scope of the CIP_2022 Project, which aims to promote the common brand “Engineering & Tooling from Portugal” internationally, visits were organized to 16 companies of the Cluster, in Oliveira de Azeméis and Marinha Grande, where international and local journalists — including ETMM — were present.

Simultaneously the Moulds Event 2021 took place in Mariana Grande — the heart of the country's mould making industry. Participants of the event had the opportunity to meet stakeholders, identify new business opportunities and promote innovative projects. Presentations, discussions, workshops and lectures addressed the challenges of the Portuguese and European mould making industry. Renowned national and international speakers contributed to the discussion, held at the Marinha Grande Corporate Centre. More than 1200 participants followed the presentations of 68 speakers. The event was concluded after five days with the international conference “Moulds Portugal 2021”, which addressed, among other things, the “positioning of companies in the global economy”, “additive manufacturing” and market trends in the sector.

In the global mould making industry, Portuguese manufacturers remain a force to be reckoned with. High-tech machining equipment, customer-oriented development departments and an experienced workforce are a hallmark of the country's industry. In view of the competition from China, Europe would be well advised to adopt the Portuguese example of strategic cooperation. ETMM will soon publish an interesting overview article on this topic with numerous insights, further developments and innovations.

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