Bahrain update: cement shortage shuts ready-mix plants

Bahrain update: cement shortage shuts ready-mix plants
Published: 05 June 2008

Two of Bahrain’s largest ready-mix concrete plants, together producing more than 4000m3 of concrete a day, have virtually stopped production for want of cement, it emerged last night.

Haji Hassan Readymix general manager Jorgen Skaarup said the plant had no more cement left and production had come to a complete halt. Eastern Asphalt general manager John Grey said production was already down to a quarter and would halt today.

The crisis, which contractors say could cost the construction industry hundreds of millions of dinars in delays and penalties, was triggered last Tuesday as tough new measures on cement exports were imposed by Saudi Arabia.

"We are down to only producing 500m3(a day) now and we shall soon exhaust all our cement in the silos," Mr Gray told the GDN. "There is nothing we can do in the absence of supplies. There is no option but to shut down."

United Cement Company (UCC) manager L R Eriksen said company officials had been running from pillar to post to try to get paperwork done to import more supplies, but in vain.

The company imports about 60 to 70 per cent of Bahrain’s total needs of between 8,000 and 10,000tpd.