The Indian government will not administer cement prices, despite manufacturers of the construction material resorting to frequent hikes in rates.
However, to ensure adequate availability of cement in the market, public sector MMTC has been given a special dispensation license to import the material, Minister of State for Commerce Ashwani Kumar said in a written reply.
The government has also removed the 12.5 per cent import duty on the commodity, along with countervailing duty and special additional customs duty.
According to the Cement Manufacturers Association (CMA), the cement prices in the country has climbed to Rs 229 in July this year from Rs 158 in December 2005.
At present, anti-monopoly watchdog MRTPC is hearing nine cases against cement producers on whether a cartel was pushing up prices.