Taiheiyo Cement Corp expects its business in the U.S. to recover next year, one year earlier than previously anticipated, as the Obama administration’s economic stimulus plan boosts sales.
"We will start seeing the impact in the second half of this year," Ryuichi Hirai, director in charge of Taiheiyo’s overseas operations, said in an interview Wednesday in Tokyo. "Now the bottom of the market should come in 2009, not 2010, as originally expected."
The Tokyo-based company won an order for 40,000 tons of cement to be used in building a section of China’s high-speed rail link between Beijing and Harbin, an early benefit from that nation’s 4 trillion yuan (¥58 trillion) economic package, Hirai said.
"The effects of China’s spending plan are coming faster than in other markets," Hirai said. "Once the country decides to start projects, the speed is fast."
Profit and sales for 2009 in the United States, its largest overseas market, "will not be far from" November’s estimate, Hirai said.