Commerce Minister Kamal Nath said that the government is looking into the cement price situation and may look at more liberal import of cement. However speaking to CNBC-TV18, Vinod Juneja of Binani Cement was rather more skeptical:
Vinod Juneja: By simply increasing imports in the country, I do not think there is going to be any relief to the consumers, because whatever import is going to take place, the coastal belt will be benefited and not places like Rajasthan, Haryana and Punjab, where there is no port. In cement, it is ultimately about the transportation cost fees and they are very substantial.
The second important point is that cement companies are not making any huge profit. Our profits are as a whole industrywise are much below the IT sector, pharma sector and even the telecom sector.
Binani Cement has already increased its capacity in the last about 14 months from 2 million metric tonne to 6 million metric tonne. They are now also putting up a new greenfield project in Gujarat into 2.5 metric tonne.
Binani Industries is the only cement company in India, which has acquired the cement plant in China, which is running fully. The Prime Minister is visiting China and we are one of the few companies, who will be there to represent the manufacturing companies in China.
Our capacity will be about 10 million metric tonne for Binani Cement by the end of 2009. The company is doing very well. We have already talked to BSE-NSE. On January 19, we will be coming out with our results. The company has already decided to raise some funds, which will basically be used for overseas acquisition and we have also expanded our overseas business.