Lithuania’s only cement manufacturer Akmenes Cementas (Akmene Cement) said on Friday its annual net profit more than doubled to 54 million litas (EUR15.65m) last year, up from LTL25.1m in 2006. Akmenes Cementas’ shareholders voted on Friday to set aside LTL2.4m for dividend and remuneration purposes. The remaining profit will go to finance the company’s modernization project, which got underway earlier this year and is to be completed by 2011, it said. Last year the cement manufacturer paid out 611,260 litas in dividends. Akmenes Cementas CEO Arturas Zaremba said that the company’s good performance helped it to finance its modernisation program. "We are using a 212-million-litas syndicated loan for our modernization needs, but we must raise another 78 million litas," he said in a press release.
The modernization project, which involves shifting from wet to dry cement production, will help Akmenes Cementas to cut its fuel costs by half and, subsequently, reduce environmental pollution. It will also allow the plant to increase its annual production output to 1.5Mt of cement.