Japan demand falls on public works spending

Japan demand falls on public works spending
Published: 29 January 2010

Japan’s cement demand is believed to have fallen to a 41-year low in 2009 amid curbs on public works spending, the Japan Cement Association said.

Demand is expected to have dropped 13.8 per cent from a year before to 44.3Mt, the lowest level since 1968 when demand totalled 45.36Mt, the association said.

The figure, which covers both domestic and imported cement, is about half the 1991 peak. Domestic cement accounted for 43.5Mt, down 13.8 per cent.

The cement market has been hit hard by a cutback in public works spending under the government of Prime Minister Yukio Hatoyama, who took office in September, as well as the global economic downturn.

Demand could drop below 40Mt in fiscal 2010 that starts in April, a senior association official said.