The European cement market has been marked by a geographical reshuffle as varying recovery rates in the region’s different countries have impacted the market with Germany taking the crown from Italy in terms of cement consumption. In addition, as a result of the recently-announced Lafarge-Holcim merger, further restructuring appears to be on the cards.
Last year, Europe’s top six cement-consuming nations – Germany, Italy, France, Poland, Great Britain and Spain – had a combined cement demand of over 102Mt. The outlook for the European cement industry is now improving. The British and the Swiss markets both saw increased deliveries last year, as did some Nordic areas. Other markets are expected to show some recovery in 2014, though the important Italian and Spanish markets are set to show further volume reductions in cement consumption, although at a much more modest rate than has been the case in the recent past.