UAE demand for cement falls 30 per cent

UAE demand for cement falls 30 per cent
Published: 02 June 2010

Dubai’s construction slowdown is cited as the main reason for drop with no sign of an early rebound
The domestic demand for cement in the UAE has fallen by 30 per cent when compared with 2009 and by 45 per cent on 2008.

MEED surveyed 10 producers in the UAE. On average, suppliers said they were now producing less cement than they were in 2009 because domestic demand has fallen.

“The market for the whole UAE is down by about 30 per cent [compared to 2009],” an executive from a Fujairah-based producer says. “It is not just affecting us, it is affecting the whole market.”

The fall in demand follows the slump in construction activity in Dubai since late 2008. According to Gulf projects tracker, MEED projects, $290bn-worth of projects are on hold or have been cancelled in the emirate.

“Dubai has collapsed and whether it will recover soon is anyone’s guess,” an executive from a producer in Ras al-Khaimah says. “In the short term, I would definitely say that we are not expecting a recovery.”

The Ras al-Khaimah producer adds that due to the oversupply of the UAE market, his company is now looking to export elsewhere.

“Given that there is an overcapacity at the moment, most companies are selling everywhere. We are exporting to Qatar and Oman at the moment.”

Source: Middle East Economic Digest