Indian cement prices to remain stable

Indian cement prices to remain stable
Published: 28 November 2007

Cement prices in India have remained stable for the past few months and are expected to be "reasonable" in the near future, helped by capacity expansion and imports, an industry ministry official said on Tuesday.  
"Cement prices have been stable for quite some time," Ajay Shankar, a secretary at the industry ministry, told reporters after a business conference.  
"Cement industry is undergoing rapid expansion. With new plants coming on stream and liberal import regime, we hope the situation will be reasonable," he added.  
India faces a shortage in cement as hectic construction activity in the rapidly growing economy boosted demand by 10 percent, while domestic supply increased at a sluggish pace of 4.9 percent until September.  
During 2005/06, cement prices surged 50 percent from a year earlier.  
But it stabilised after June this year, following the onset of monsoon and also due to the arrival of imported cement from Pakistan.  
India allowed duty-free import of cement from Pakistan in June this year.