Ethiopian cement factories, Mugar and Messobo, have requested that the government halt cement imports in letters to the Ministry of Finance and Economic Development. The cement plants claimed that they can produce enough to meet local demand.
The cement factories have excess stock according to an anonymous official at Mughar. The two factories have increased their production by a total of 1.7Mta following expansion projects.
There has been seen an unexpected change in trend in the cement sector where supply could very well exceed existing demand according to industry sources. There are more cement factories in the sector while demand is decreasing.
The difference between demand and supply has forced the price of cement down to about ETB300 per 50kg bag from the ETB500 seen earlier this year.
Mugher Cement has taken this trend into consideration and is planning to open its doors to the private sector according to sources from within the company.
The national demand is expected to be approximately 8Mt this fiscal year. This sum includes the more than 200 thousand tons required for the construction of the Great Renaissance Dam according to a study by the Ministry of Industry.
The total amount of cement demanded is still 5.8Mt less that expected demand and 3Mt less than that of last year.
There are five companies set to enter into production this year bringing the total supply to 12.6Mt.