Cement dispatches fall 12.17% in September

Iqtidar GilaniOur Correspondent

04th Oct, 2021. 07:46 pm
Cement sales

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LAHORE: Cement dispatches declined 12.17 per cent in September 2021, compared with the same month of the last year, according to the data released by the All Pakistan Cement Manufacturers Association, released on Monday.

The total cement dispatches last month remained 4.589 million tonnes as against 5.225 million tonnes during September 2020.

The local cement dispatches during September 2021 remained 4.018 million tonnes as against 4.095 million tonnes in September 2020, showing a decline of 1.88 per cent.

The export dispatches suffered a 49.45 per cent decline, as the volumes reduced from 1.131 million tonnes in September 2020 to 0.572 million tonnes in September 2021.

During September 2021, North-based mills dispatched 3.451 million tonnes cement in domestic markets, showing a fall of 2.04 per cent over 3.523 million tonnes dispatches in September 2020.

Likewise, South-based mills dispatched 567,445 tonnes cement in the local markets during September 2021 that was slightly less, compared with the dispatches of 571,639 tonnes during September 2020.

The exports from the North-based mills declined 61.63 per cent, as the quantities reduced from 287,287 tonnes in September 2020 to 110,245 tonnes in September 2021. Similarly, the exports from South also decreased 45.29 per cent to 461,340 tonnes in September 2021 from 843,334 tonnes during the same month last year.

The data further showed that during the first quarter of the current fiscal year, the total cement dispatches [domestic and exports] remained 12.825 million tonnes that was 5.67 per cent lower than 13.596 million tonnes dispatched during the corresponding period of the last fiscal year.

The domestic dispatches increased 3.92 per cent to 11.279 million tonnes from 10.853 million tonnes during July-September 2020.

The exports during the period under review declined 43.64 per cent to 1.546 million tonnes from 2.743 million tonnes during July-September 2020. The North-based mills dispatched 9.483 million tonnes cement domestically during the first quarter of the current fiscal year, showing a slight increase of 0.22 per cent than the cement dispatches of 9.463 million tonnes during July-September 2020.

The exports from North declined 37.69 per cent to 387,667 tonnes during July-September 2021, compared with 622,186 tonnes during the same period of the last year. The domestic dispatches by the South-based mills during July-September 2021 remained 1.795 million tonnes, showing a healthy increase of 29.15 per cent over 1.39 million tonnes of cement dispatched during the same period of the last fiscal year.

There was; however, a decline of around 45.38 per cent in exports from the South Zone, as the volumes reduced to 1.158 million tonnes in the first three months of the current fiscal year from 2.12 million tonnes during the corresponding period of the last fiscal year.

A spokesman for the association [APCMA] said coal prices have increased to over $210/tonne during September 2021, compared with around $68/tonne in September 2020. Ocean freight from South Africa to Karachi has also increased to $30/tonne in September 2021 from $11/tonne in September 2020.

The rupee/dollar parity has increased to over Rs171/dollar from Rs165/dollar during the period under review. The spokesman said the power and energy tariffs were increasing and the transportation cost has also gone high due to an increase in the petroleum prices. These price escalations have seriously affected the cost of doing business in the local, as well as international markets.

He also expressed concerns over decrease in the demand; however, he expressed the hope that the cement industry would regain its growth momentum in the coming months, mainly due to the government policies related to the construction sector.

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