Prices of refrigerators are likely to increase by up to 5 percent as the revised norms of the Bureau of Energy Efficiency (BEE) have become applicable from January 1 this year. According to manufacturers like Godrej Appliances, Haier and Panasonic, implementation of the new norms may put an additional burden of 2-5 percent on consumers, depending on the models.
Besides tightening the labelling, the new norms also mandate separate star labelling for freezers and refrigerator provisioning units (storage part) of the frost-free models. "Now, we have to declare labelling for both. That is the new change," said Godrej Appliances Business Head and Executive Vice President Kamal Nandi told PTI.
When asked about the price increase, he said: "In every energy efficiency tightening, cost inputs go up a little bit to achieve those efficiencies through better insulation and around 2-3 percent price hike because of this will be happening, depending on various models and star ratings".
Moreover, another change in the recent star labeling that is happening is the declaration of the net capacity of a refrigerator unit and not the gross capacity, Nandi said. Net capacity is the usable capacity of any refrigerator, while gross capacity is based on the total volume (of liquid) which could be stored in a unit.
"For example, there are gaps between the door and shelves, which are not useable. So, those will not be considered," Nandi added. This will help a customer to make a judicious decision while buying the refrigerator, based on the actual space available to them for storing.
Haier Appliances India President Satish NS said after BEE revised norms, energy efficiency for refrigerators has been redefined. "Some of the compressors have to be reloaded or changed. Definitely, we are looking for a 2-4 percent price increase," he said, adding "the cost would be passed on to the consumers".
Panasonic Marketing India MD Fumiyasu Fujimori said, "With the revised BEE norms coming into effect, we expect an impact on the pricing of refrigerators to go up to 5 percent. We at Panasonic, are keeping a close eye on the development and will try to absorb maximum costs". Entry-level buyers will face a challenge as affordability costs will rise, he added.
According to a report from Research And Markets, the Indian refrigerator market was valued at USD 3.07 billion in 2022 and is anticipated to achieve a market value of USD 5.88 billion by 2028 with a CAGR of 11.62 percent.
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