India’s Transport Minister Kamal Nath on Thursday said he favoured building concrete roads in the country, but asked the cement industry to ensure that this does not lead to shortages and a rise in prices of the key construction material.
Reacting to the industry’s demand for construction of cement concrete roads, Nath said: "We will support cement concrete roads. Cement roads are a must in India... But industry will have to ensure that there is no shortage and price rise when we start building cement roads."
Addressing the 49th annual meet of the Cement Manufacturers’ Association (CMA), Nath said, "While the industry is concerned about surplus capacity, I am more concerned about shortage.... a sentiment of shortage could lead to higher price."
The minister said there is no need for the industry to make a case for adoption of concrete roads. Rather, they should make a case that "this is not going to lead to shortages."
He said the United Progressive Alliance (UPA) government is making massive investment to bridge the huge infrastructure deficit, which means more demand for the cement industry.