With increasing rural affluence, demand for cement for construction of houses in villages has gone up significantly over the last few years.
Rural housing, according to industry estimates, is expected to account for 50 per cent of the overall demand for cement during this year and beyond, replacing the traditional drivers for cement consumption - infrastructure and the urban housing segment.
"The cement industry is expecting around 50 per cent of the overall demand to come from the rural housing sector during the current year and beyond. Rural people, especially in most underdeveloped States, are increasingly replacing thatched mud hutments and switching over to pucca (brick and mortar) structures," the Cement Manufacturers’ Association Vice-President and Shree Cements Managing Director, Mr H.M. Bangur, told Business Line.
While a marked increase in demand is being seen in the rural parts of predominantly underdeveloped States such as Bihar, Chhattisgarh and Uttar Pradesh, the hill States of Uttarakhand, Himachal Pradesh and the North-East are also seeing a spurt in demand, cement players said.