World cement consumption is expected to decline 1.7 per cent in 2009, a modest drop that is cushioned by a roughly four per cent growth in utilisation by China and India, according to a recent report by the Portland Cement Association (PCA),
Gains in China and India, which together account for 58 per cent of the world’s cement consumption, will mask the harsh downturns predicted for many of the world’s cement markets. Among developing economies, consumption is anticipated to decline nearly 16 per cent during 2009.
Although world governments are engaged in massive stimulus programs, early projects most likely will be low in cement intensities. Jobs such as bridge work, which has higher cement intensities but longer design times, will materialise full force in 2010, when worldwide, cement consumption will yield a 3.7 per cent gain.
“The magnitude of the global economic stimulus programs currently underway is unprecedented,” Ed Sullivan, PCA chief economist said. “This is concentrated, however, in developed countries. Emerging economies, with the exception of China and India, are expected to lag one year behind.”
Sullivan predicts continued worldwide growth rates of 7.7 per cent and 6.9 per cent in 2011 and 2012, respectively.