BUENOS AIRES (June 21, 2:50 p.m. ET) — Argentina's only local producer of extrusion and co-extrusion lines, Roberto O. Rodofeli y Cia. srl, is adapting one of its models to help break in to the U.S. market, the company said during Argenplás.
The 40-year-old Argentine company, which makes co-extrusion lines capable of making film with up to nine layers, is expanding its sales focus from solely Latin America to include the United States. The company previously had one client there, but broke through with two new sales to producers in Texas (which bought a 75-mm extruder) and Michigan (a seven-layer co-extruder) after attending NPE2012 in Orlando in early April.
The company has had to adapt its design for the needs of potential U.S. clients, including offering a 75-mm version and updating electronic parts and die designs, said Roberto Rodofeli, production manager.
Rodofeli is optimistic about domestic sales through this year and next, following the Argentine government's recent activation of trade barriers and increased tariffs for foreign-made goods and machinery that compete with similar items made locally.
With economies slowing in Argentina, neighboring markets and Europe this year, Rodofeli appreciates any help it can get to maintain strong domestic business. There are downsides to bureaucratic intervention, though.
The new trade policies also heavily restrict or delay the import of machine parts from outside the South American trade region of Mercosul. A number of parts that Rodofeli needs are only made in Europe or Asia, but the company will now face as much as six months or more of delays on those orders, for which it has to justify each foreign purchase with multiple customs applications.
Argenplás is taking place June 18-22 in Buenos Aires.