PPC intends to double its business every 10 years, starting with a 50 per cent increase in its cement production capacity by 2018, according to a presentation by the company at a Merrill Lynch conference in Sun City, South Africa. Its current 8.6Mta capacity is expected to grow to an estimated 12.7Mta by 2018 through investments in DRC (+1Mta), Zimbabwe (+0.7Mta), Ethiopia (+1.4Mta) and an upgrade of its South African Slurry works (1Mta).

This comes on the back of a one per cent fall in group cement sales in the first five months of FY16 and significant pressure on selling prices in most regions, including a five per cent drop in the South African cement business. Expansion remains key to the company’s future strategy with ZAR900m-1.3bn (US$58.9-85.1m) set aside for capex in the six months to March 2016, a further ZAR1.7-2.2bn earmarked for FY17 (12 months to March 2017) and ZAR500-900m planned for FY18.

According to the company, it plans to maintain its share of the growing African market while expanding further afield in the longer term. It also intends to diversify away from cement while growing volume sales.