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Monday June 24, 2024

Cement sales continue to lose strength

By Jawwad Rizvi
November 04, 2022

LAHORE: Cement dispatches declined by 18.46 percent in October 2022. Total Cement dispatches during October 2022 were 4.252 million tonnes against 5.215 million tonnes dispatched during the same month of last fiscal year.

According to the data released by All Pakistan Cement Manufacturers Association (APCMA), local cement dispatches by the industry during the month of October 2022 were 3.89 million tonnes compared to 4.6 million tonnes in October 2021, showing a decline of 15.5 percent. Exports also declined by a massive 40.73 percent as volumes reduced from 611,378 tonnes in October 2021 to 362,350 tonnes in October 2022.

In October 2022, north-based cement mills dispatched 3.27 million tonnes cement showing a decline of 16.15 percent against 3.9 million tonnes in October 2021. South-based mills dispatched 978,166 tonnes cement during October 2022 that was 25.33 percent less compared to 1.31 million tonnes during October 2021.

Cement units in the northern part of the country dispatched 3.14 million tonnes domestically during October 2022 showing a decline of 17.97 percent against 3.83 million tonnes in October 2021. South-based mills dispatched 746,927 tonnes in local markets that was 3.22 percent less compared to 771,755 tonnes during October 2021. Exports from the north increased 79.35 percent as quantities increased from 73,102 tonnes in October 2021 to 131,111 tonnes in October 2022.

Exports from the south reduced 57.04 percent to 231,239 tonnes in October 2022 from 538,276 tonnes during the same month last year.

During the first four months of the current fiscal, total cement dispatches (domestic and exports) were 13.87 million tonnes; down 23.1 percent than 18.04 million tonnes in the corresponding period last fiscal. Domestic dispatches during this period were 12.49 million tonnes against 15.88 million tonnes during the same period last year, showing a reduction of 21.35 percent. Export dispatches were also 35.96 percent less as the volumes reduced to 1.38 million tonnes during the first four months of the current fiscal compared to 2.15 million tonnes during the same period last fiscal year.

Domestically, cement units up north sold 10.4 million tonnes during the first four months of the current fiscal; down 21.88 percent from 13.31 million tonnes during July-October 2021. Exports from the north declined 8.89 percent to 419,283 tonnes during July-October 2022 compared with 460,769 tonnes during the same period last year. Total dispatches by the north-based factories went down 21.45 percent to 10.82 million tonnes during July-October the current financial year from 13.77 million tonnes in the same period last year.

Units in the south sold 2.08 million tonnes domestically in July-October 2022; down 18.59 percent over 2.56 million tonnes dispatched during the same period last fiscal. Exports from the south fell 43.32 percent to 961,581 tonnes compared with 1.69 million tonnes exported during the same period last year. Total dispatches by the south-based mills fell 28.43 percent to 3.05 million tonnes during the first fourth months of this fiscal from 4.26 million tonnes during the same period last fiscal.

APCMA spokesman expressed grave concerns over the continuous decline in cement demand and the rising input costs. He asked the government to come up with industry-friendly policies to make cement more competitive in the international markets. He was optimistic that Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif’s China visit would help revive the CPEC projects and boost cement demand. The government should also speed-up the rehabilitation works in flood affected areas, so that the difficulties of people were reduced before the coming winter season, he added.