Representatives of the All Pakistan Cement Manufacturers Association (APCMA) said that due to investment friendly policies of the government, the capacity of cement plants have increased to 33Mt, at the end of year 2006 as compared to 21Mt in January 2006.
“The present domestic demand is around 22Mt”, the representatives told a meeting convened here on Wednesday to discuss and review cement situation i.e. demand and supply position and export potential vis-a-vis level of construction activities in the country.
The meeting was held under the chairmanship of Shahab Khawaja, secretary, Ministry of Industries, Production & Special initiatives (MOIP&SI). The meeting was also attended by the representatives of APCMA, Chairman, All Pakistan Constructors Association, and Tariq Bajwa, Joint Secretary, MOIP&SI, and senior officer of Ministry of Industries, Production and Special Initiatives, Ministry of Commerce, Central Board of Revenue and Ministry of Ports and Shipping.
The position regarding cement prices in domestic market, demand and supply and export of cement was discussed and reviewed in detail.
Shahab Khawaja expressed his satisfaction over stabilisation of cement prices in the domestic market.
The representatives of APCMA requested that due to surplus capacity there is huge potential of export of cement and requested for further provisions of incentives and export facilities including infrastructure facilities at ports so that they may be in a position to compete the export market in Africa, Sri Lanka and Gulf countries.
The Chairman, All Pakistan Contractors Association appreciated the efforts of the government for stabilising cement prices. He added that construction industry is playing important role in the development of country and is generating employments.
Shahab Khawaja assured the cement manufacturers that government will consider their request sympathetically and provide all possible facilities for export of cement. However, he stated that prices of cement should not be increased as the government has to protect the interests of the common man.