Management at Holcim Philippines say it may hike prices of cement by July, in a bid to ease margin pressures caused by the power crisis in Mindanao and the need to import clinker from Japan, local press report.
In a briefing following Tuesday’s stockholders meeting, newly appointed Holcim Philippines chief operating officer Roland van Wijnen said the company had already held off on jacking up prices in typhoon-hit areas last year, opting instead to hike prices in Northern Luzon and Mindanao.
But the rotational brownouts in Mindanao had significantly affected the company’s Misamis Oriental and Davao operations, causing efficiency to slide and margin pressure to increase, he explained.
“We need to recover from inefficiencies on the pricing side,” van Wijnen said.
Eduardo Sahagun, senior vice president for sales, marketing, distribution and technical services, added that the need to import clinker from Japan had also increased the cement firm’s costs.
“The impact of the imported clinker (on our costs) will be felt in the second quarter. The impact of the power crisis will also be felt at the same time. Right now, we still can’t quantify, but we’ll have a better idea at the end of the first half,” he said.