Sales of cement in Saudi Arabia remained weak, up only 11.8 per cent YoY, the second lowest growth figure in 16 months. However, due to increased sales of clinker in the kingdom and continued growth of cement exports, the overall sector cement and clinker sales increased by a reasonable 18.7 per cent YoY in May.
Meanwhile, private players’ market share increased to 21.5 per cent from 15.8 per cent a year ago and 21.4 per cent in April, according to the latest NCB Capital report on the sector. In May, five companies lost domestic market share to seven companies.
Arabian Cement was the biggest gainer of the month, increasing its share by 0.79 per cent. On the other hand, Yamama Cement was the biggest loser of the month with its market share falling by 0.58 per cent.
Saudi Arabia has 12 cement companies with an estimated annual cement production capacity of 48 Mt. Total cement and clinker sales, including exports for May, stood at 4.12Mt, reporting an increase of 18.7 per cent YoY and five per cent MoM. Cement exports stood at 112,000t in May, up 41.8 per cent YoY. On a MoM basis, cement exports grew seven per cent from 105,000t in April.
In May, cement production decreased by 4.9 per cent MoM to 3.73Mt. However, clinker production increased by 10 per cent m-o-m to 3.62Mt. Clinker stock as a percentage of domestic cement sales decreased to 223 per cent from 233 per cent in April and the high of 481 per cent in September last year.
In May, total cement sales in Saudi Arabia stood at 3.79Mt versus 3.61Mt in April and 3.39Mt in May 2009. Domestic clinker sales in May this year stood at 128,000t compared to 140,000t in April and 7000t in May 2009. In May 2010, cement and clinker exports stood at 112,000t and 94,000t respectively.
Four companies exported cement during the month – Saudi Cement, Eastern Province Cement and Northern Region Cement. In May, cement and clinker sales in Saudi Arabia were up 15.4 per cent YoY to 3.91Mt compared to 3.39m tonnes in May 2009.
However, there was a big discrepancy between cement and clinker; domestic cement sales went up 11.8 per cent YoY to 3.79Mt, but clinker sales increased 1729 per cent YoY.