Global cement demand surpasses 3bnt in 2010

Global cement demand surpasses 3bnt in 2010
Published: 08 April 2011

Global cement consumption climbed to 3294Mt in 2010, up 9.9% on the year before, according to the latest industry data published today in the Global Cement Report, Ninth Edition. This marks an improvement on the growth rate of 5.9% seen in 2009, when demand reached 2998Mt, and 2.4% in 2008 when global cement consumption was recorded at 2830Mt.

China remains the underlying driver of global cement demand, consuming 1851Mt in 2010, almost double 2004 levels, and accounting for 56% of world consumption (45% in 2005). Its stellar growth trajectory – peaking at 17% in 2009 – is in marked contrast to the market collapse experienced in the rest of the world, which saw demand fall by 4% in 2009, but recover to 3% in 2010.

After China, India’s dynamic market saw demand expand by 10% to 212Mt in 2010, while that of the United States contracted by 0.5% to 69Mt. Brazil (60Mt) and Iran (56Mt) complete the Top 5.

Global cement production capacity has now reached 3.5bnt. In total there are 149 cement producing nations, 32 of which produce 10Mta or more, and 17 that have no cement production base at all. The Report records a total of 2360 integrated cement works, of which an estimated 1000 are modern plants located in China, utilising dry-process preheater technology. Since the last report, an estimated 140 new cement plants have been established. There are a total of 750 dedicated grinding units, including 350 in China.

World trade in cement and clinker was noted at 151Mt in 2010, amounting to 5% of production. This total is down 8% from 164Mt in 2008 and reflects increasing levels of supply available in domestic markets, resulting from the surge in capacity additions around the world over the last two years. Seaborne trade in clinker and cement is estimated at 105Mt.

With a domestic production base that relies entirely on imported clinker and cement, Bangladesh is currently the largest importer worldwide. Deliveries increased by 3Mt in 2010 to over 12.5Mt on the back of booming demand. Nigeria is in second place with volumes of 7.3Mt, while the USA saw its imports fall to just 5.6Mt in 2010, down from a peak of 36Mt in 2006. Two countries heavily involved in post-conflict reconstruction, Iraq and Afghanistan, complete the Top 5.

Lafarge retains its leading position in terms of global cement sales and turnover at 141.2Mt and €15,884m, respectively, compared to Holcim with cement sales of 136.7Mt and a turnover of €15,691m. HeidelbergCement remains third, ahead of Cemex, Italcementi and Buzzi Unicem. Holcim, however, has the lead in terms of global cement capacity at 212Mt, 11Mt higher than Lafarge.

The Global Cement Report, Ninth Edition, includes country-by-country profiles, statistical data and forecasts (to 2012) for 166 countries. This essential reference is accompanied by a CD providing 20 years of statistical data in Excel format, and is available for immediate purchase here.