Pakistan cement exports hit record high

Pakistan cement exports hit record high
Published: 18 July 2008

Pakistan cement exports after earning a historical level of US$435m foreign exchange during financial year 2007-08, is all set to touch US$1bn-mark by 2010, industry sources told Daily Times Thursday.

During fiscal year 2007-08, country exports stood at 7.712 million tones ($435 million) and Pakistan has already established its position as an exporter of cement and clinker in the region, sources added. Sources said the industry projections suggested that the cement industry exports would reach to $735 million by the end of 2008-09 and it would touch $1.043 billion by the end of 2009-10.

Pakistan’s cement industry started exporting cement in the year 2001 and it has increased its compatibility gradually, as significant improvement has been taking place with every passing day.

Cement industry’s installed capacity had more than doubled during the last five years, which helped the industry to touch all time high dispatch mark during the last fiscal year, they said.

The cement industry in Pakistan has expanded capacity from 17.8 million metric tonnes in 2003 to 39 million metric tonnes in 2008 and is expected to rise further to 50 million metric tonnes in 2010. They said the cement manufacturers were enhancing their role among competitors and at present, regional countries were facing huge shortage of cement, which had played a key role in achieving landmark cement exports during the last fiscal year.

“During the last fiscal year, strong external demands from the Gulf countries have continued pushing local companies to invest more in the cement sector, besides utilising their maximum capacity to meet international demand,” they said.

Pakistan has been exporting cement to Middle East, India, Afghanistan, Central Asian States, South Africa, Switzerland, Sudan, Egypt and Iraq. Some more destinations are likely to add up in the next two years, thus helping the cement industry to touch the level of one billion dollars accordingly. The industry circles have pointed out that the industry has achieved this startling exports level single-handedly and no tangible policy support from the government has so far been extended to the cement exporters. According to them, the cement industry could boost the exports further in case government comes up with appropriate infrastructural measures.