The continuous rise in international coal prices and an anticipated increased supply may cause further increase in cement prices in near future, industry sources said. Increase in world coal prices is resulting in stunning increase in the cost of doing business, ultimately putting the end-user in a troublesome situation, they said.
At present, 90 percent of industry demand for coal is met through import, and the rest 10 percent is met through local resources. The cement industry imports more than 3.5Mt coal every year. All 29 cement units in the country, aggregating a capacity of 37.156Mt, representing 100 percent of the industry, have already converted to coal.
Due to non-availability of good quality indigenous coal, the industry has no option but to import low-sulphur coal from Indonesia, China and South Africa.