HeidelbergCement is currently undertaking its first expansion project in the Caucasus region by increasing capacity at the Kartuli Cementi plant to 500,000t by early 2008. Later it plans to increase cement production up to 1Mt.
In an interview with Georgian Times, Meinhard Thrul, General Manager of HeidelbergCement in Georgia discussed the perspectives and profitability of the business of building materials production in Georgia.
Q: Why Georgia? What made you decide that it was reasonable to invest in this country? I imagine that a serious amount of market research was carried out. What kind of results did your experts gather?
A: It is our daily job to scan the whole world for the opportunities to invest. The first things that are taken into consideration are: the political situation (its stability) economical situation (can we expect growth in the economy) and are there favourable opportunities to invest. So at the time when we decided to start we had enough faith in the country and its development potential. Georgia is also a strategically well-located country with a large potential for growth. It benefits from the transport of oil from neighboring Azerbaijan and is also a transit country between the Black and the Caspian Seas. With this in mind, further economic growth, large investments in infrastructural projects and a significant increase in cement consumption can be expected.