Proposed cement standard likely to raise competition, South Africa

Proposed cement standard likely to raise competition, South Africa
Published: 22 January 2007

The proposed introduction of a new compulsory specification for cement has moved a step closer with the publication of a draft specification for public comment.

If introduced, the new regulation is likely to increase international competition in the local market because it relaxes a key technical barrier to trade.

The quality of common and masonry cement has been regulated in South Africa since 1998 by the Harmful Business Practices Act, which was subsequently replaced by the Business Practices Act.

The planned repeal of the Business Practices Act, which will be replaced by the Consumer Protection Act, led to a decision to transfer this regulatory responsibility to the SA Bureau of Standards (SABS).

Alan Cohen, the project manager at the SABS, said the 1998 standard for cement was based on the European standards for cement, but also made the SABS mark mandatory on any product complying with the standard.