Domestic consumption of cement rises its production despite rains
ISLAMABAD: The cement dispatches, during the month of August this year, stood at 3.585 million tonnes that were 16.75 percent higher than the dispatches of 3.071 million tonnes, which was recorded during the same month of last fiscal year, said the data released by All Pakistan Cement Manufacturers Association (APCMA).
The data issued by APCMA revealed that during August of current fiscal year, the domestic sales were 3.028 million tonnes against 2.5 million tonnes as compare to August last fiscal year (2015), showing a robust growth of 20.92 percent, while zone wise, domestic dispatches in North, during August this year, were 2.495 million tonnes, whereas 2.034 million tonnes were recorded in August, 2015 and in South were 0.532 million tonnes.
The total domestic dispatches, on year-on-year basis, during the first two months of current fiscal year were 4.89 million tonnes, as compared to 4.3 million tonnes during the same period of last fiscal year, showing an impressive growth of 13.83 percent, data further revealed.
The overall export dispatches have been continuously decreasing and during the first two months of current fiscal it went down from 1.032 million tonnes to 1.022 million tonnes during the same period of last fiscal year, the data reported.
Meanwhile, the exports to Afghanistan dropped to 346,928 tonnes during the first two months of current fiscal year, as compared to 394,500 tonnes during the same period of last fiscal year, showing a decline of 12.1 percent, it added.
The exports by sea suffered even more, as against the quantity of 537,120 tonnes exported during July and August 2015. The exports, during July and August this year, were 407,120 tonnes like reduction of 24.19 percent.
However, increased exports to India adjusted these shortfalls to some extent, while the quantity exported to India during the first two months of current fiscal were 268,230 tonnes, as compared to 100,437 tonnes during the same period of last fiscal year.
The industry has come a long way in the past two decades increasing its installed capacity by five times during the said period, doubling its production capacity every seven to eight years. The enthusiasm in the sector, on the strength of robust domestic consumption during last 20 months, has encouraged the players to go for further expansion in capacities.
The sector has grown at the rate of 10.97 percent in the first two months of this fiscal year. It posted growth even in July despite Eid holidays that lasted for a week. The growth of domestic consumption in August is also robust, as the consistent rains failed to affect the construction activities.
The already launched infrastructure projects also gave boost to cement uptake, whereas the upcoming projects along the CPEC route would further boost consumption. Various companies are going for expansion, which would increase the overall capacity and would help in the development of CPEC projects due to this reason, the data revealed.
The domestic consumption of cement has increased manifolds, while the industry is yet to realise its exports potential, mainly due to the lack of support from government. It is pertinent to mention here that loss of Afghanistan market is a matter of concern for the industry, which has been marginalised in the market of Afghanistan by subsidised Iranian exports, it said.
According to the data analysis of industry, cement manufacturing has reached its new heights and with some incentives from government, the industry can further explore Indian, Afghani and other neighbouring markets, earning valuable foreign exchange for the country.