Editorial

GIFA SPECIAL EDITION 2019
Dear Reader,
it is an honour as WFO President to be asked to give my thoughts on the ‘chances and challenges’ for the global Metalcasting industry. For those of you that are not fully aware of the WFO or its activities, it was formed over 90 years ago to bring together and unite the member associations and to this day, represents over 30 countries (including Germany) and which account for over 90% of the total tonnage cast in our industry. The WFO organises three flagship events, the Technical Forum to be held in Slovenia this year, the Congress which is hosted in South Korea in 2020 and finally since the success of the 2018 ‘World Foundry Summit’ aimed at senior level management within our industry we will be repeating the event in New York, USA in May 2020. Our industry keeps expanding and is forecast to reach 116 Million Tonnes by the end of the year. This tonnage is, by in large, driven by the automotive sector and emerging countries are significantly contributing to this. At the same time, our industry is going through a profound change as electrification and 3D printing starts to impact on this sector. It is unclear yet in which direction this will take us ultimately, however the increased use of lightweight metals seems to be paramount in this either with electrification or not. We also note that around the world the issues that our member organisations face is, by in large, the same. Constant environmental pressures along with labour shortages present new challenges for our industry and one that we must overcome if we are to succeed. The drive to bring our industry into the 21st century has already begun with some excellent examples of foundries that have embraced the use of Industry 4.0 and who constantly strive to engage with their employees, suppliers and customers alike. Operations like these should be the benchmark for our industry and as I am fortunate to travel the world, have seen many examples of this. Ultimately, this is one of the founding roles for the WFO to act as a conduit for ‘best practise’. At the moment we have 6 working groups focused on challenges such as training, environmental, etc. and composed of a combination of industrial and academics from around the world to undertake these studies and subsequent recommendations. The resulting work is shared amongst our members and we are proud to be able to facilitate and distribute for the industries benefit. Our industry is vibrant and specialised. We are the original recyclers by taking others scrap and by means of purification and alloying making parts that serve us in almost every aspect of life. It is our job to educate people that foundries should not be perceived as dirty, dark and smelly places but hubs of industrial excellence that form the backbone of any industrialised nation. Mark Fenyes
The World Foundry Organization
President

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