Indonesian cement consumption in July rose 10.5 per cent from a year ago, as the construction sector received a boost from lower interest rates and new infrastructure projects, the country’s cement association said on Tuesday.
Urip Timuryono, the chairman of Indonesia’s cement association, told Reuters that Southeast Asia’s largest economy consumed 3.08 million tonnes of the building material in July, up from 2.79 million in the same month of 2006.
July’s cement consumption took the year to date total to 18.68 million tonnes, up 8 percent from a year ago.
"The increase was partly due to falling interest rates. Infrastructure development also helped sales," Timuryono told Reuters.
"In early 2006, sales slowed due to the fuel price hike in 2005, but as interest rates have fallen cement consumption has increased again. Property and construction sector, housing development has started to grow again."
Timuryono said he expected cement sales to hit 33 million tonnes for the whole of 2007, up from last year’s 32.1 million tonnes, helped by the launch of infrastructure projects.
A newspaper had earlier reported the association as saying domestic demand was 3.84 million tonnes for July. Infrastructure projects such as toll roads and a recovery in the housing market are expected to boost the construction and cement sectors.