Holcim's turnover in 2009 was down by 16.0 per cent to CHF21,132m (€13,995m), which on a comparative basis represents a 10.0 per cent reduction. The operating EBITDA was down slightly less, by 13.2 per cent to CHF4630m (€3066m). The trading profit was down by 17.2 per cent to CHF2781m and the net attributable profit by the same percentage to CHF1471m (€974m). The proceeds from the sale of emission rights amounted to CHF90m, compared with CHF34m in 2008. A similar amount of emission rights are likely to be sold this year, but what at what prices? Net debt at the end of December was down by 8.1 per cent to CHF13,833m (€9284m) to give a gearing level of 62.8 per cent, compared with 83.7 per cent at the end of previous year. Capital investment last year was reduced by 47.5 per cent in 2008 to CHF2305m (€1526m) and is expected to amount to some CHF2000m this year. The reduction was post pronounced in maintenance expenditure, which was reduced from CHF1104m to just CHF376m (€249m). Spending on acquisitions, on the other hand, more than doubled to CHF2285m (€1513m), largely the acquisition of Cemex' assets in Australia. Group cement deliveries were 8.0 per cent lower at 131.9m tonnes, while sales of other binders dropped by 27.1 per cent to 3.5m tonnes.

ACC Limited, one of Holcim's two main subsidiaries in India, reported cement deliveries of 3.62m tonnes for the first two months of 2010, virtually in line with the 3.63m tonnes for the same period last year. The sister company Ambuja Cements commissioned the 1.5mtpa grinding plant at Nalagarh in Himachai Pradesh during March, with clinker being supplied from the company's Rauri works some 95 km away.

The publicly quoted Holcim Indonesia, which last year acquired a majority stake in Holcim Malaysia from the parent, is 77.3 per cent owned by Holcim and the third largest Indonesian cement producer, is to start with the construction of a 1.7m tonnes per annum integrated at Tuban on eastern Java later this year.