German cement consumption falls in line with housing construction downturn

German cement consumption falls in line with housing construction downturn
Published: 22 June 2010

The economic downturn in Germany has left a sharp decline in cement consumption. Housing currently has a cement consumption share of 22.5 per cent (5.7Mt) – a new low. At the turn of the millennium, the cement consumption share of housing construction was around 36 per cent.

Even the non-residential construction, ie, the construction investment,  has suffered. After  economic growth in  2007 and 2008 with a cement consumption share of last 41 per cent, there was a decline again in 2009, to 9.9Mt (39.3 per cent). In contrast, public works achieved a share of 38.2 per cent (9.7Mt) in 2009, a peak in the use of cement largely helped by Government stimulus programmes.

Of the total 25.4Mt of domestic consumption in 2009 (27.6Mt in 2008) 54.8 per cent was used in situ, ie in the form of concrete (11.3Mt) or concrete construction (2.6Mt). A further 31.6 per cent (8Mt) were used in precast concrete products. 5.2 per cent (1.3Mt) went to the production of mortar, plaster, screed and construction chemicals. The remaining 8.4 per cent (2.1Mt) are assigned to various other application fields, including as shotcrete, soil hardening and mining products.