Caribbean Cement Company has said that, effective today, it will begin offering discounts on its Carib Cement Plus product by $40 per 45.5 kilogram bag.
The company said in a press release on Friday that it has had to take this action in an effort to bring down “mounting inventory of cement”.
“Carib Cement has been faced with full silos and warehouses for much of the year and has had to shut down its mills on numerous occasions, despite exporting more than 60,000 tonnes of cement to date… the presence of dumped cement in the local market has and continues to displace domestic sales. This situation is further compounded by the fact that the local market has shrunk primarily due to the effects of the global recession,” said the company in a statement.
The company added that in July it had to discount its cement by $35 per bag for the same reason.
Carib Cement’s marketing manager, Alice Hyde, said the reduction in price is to make space so production can continue and will last until the required amount of cement is sold.
She also said that she hoped the reduction in price would stimulate some activity in the construction and related sectors, which in turn should mean increased sales for Carib Cement.
She said Carib Cement is committed to sharing the benefits of increased efficiencies of the Company’s more modern plant with its customers. In August, the new mill, an integral part of the Company’s US$177-million Expansion and Modernisation Programme, was commissioned and with that Carib Cement increased its cement manufacturing capacity to 1.8 million tonnes per annum.
Last month, Government and Carib Cement Company brokered a deal to allow private companies to import 15 per cent of the country’s anticipated annual demand for cement. With the new agreement, independent companies may import a total 120,000 tonnes of cement this year without attracting special tariff.
Carib Cement enjoys protection under the Common External Tariff that imposes a 40-odd per cent duty on the importation of cement from outside Caricom. But a waiver for the importation of cement was granted after tainted cement was supplied by Carib Cement some three years ago, leaving the company unable to adequately supply the market.