An unprecedented construction boom in Gujarat is expected to propel cement consumption to touch at least 14Mt in 2007-08 from current 12.5Mta. Cement companies are positive that the high per capita consumption of cement in Gujarat at 250kg - compared to the national average of 125kg - will further cement their position in the state.
According to Cement Manufacturers’ Association secretary-general EN Murthy, the construction boom across India has taken cement consumption from 143Mt in 2005-06 to 156Mt in 2006-07, 2008-09 could see a growth of 11-11.5%. Cement players add that Gujarat has performed better than the rest.
"At 10.5 lakh tonnes per month, Gujarat’s cement consumption was 10-12% higher than the national average. This is perhaps the highest growth Gujarat has ever recorded, thanks to the Vibrant Gujarat Summits initiated by the state government," said Sanghi Industries executive director RP Singh.
Cement players are ecstatic about the concrete boom in Ahmedabad and Surat. At present, Ahmedabad city’s cement consumption stands at 1.7 lakh tonne per month, while Surat stands second at one lakh tonne per month.
"Big infrastructure projects including the Rs 1,490-crore Sabarmati River Front Development, the Rs 291-crore Ahmedabad International Airport Terminal project, the Rs 357-crore Bus Rapid Transport System, and the Rs 42.55-crore Surat Textile Park have set the ball rolling for cement players," executive director of Binani Cement D Sundararajan said.
Ahmedabad is expected to grow by 25% while Surat will grow by 10-15% in 2007-08 due to the construction boom, he said. Currently catering to Gujarat market with 60,000t of cement per month, Binani is looking to increase sales up to 1.25 lakh tonnes, he said.