Steppe Cement reports ’strong improvement’ in H1 ops

Steppe Cement reports ’strong improvement’ in H1 ops
Published: 06 September 2006

Steppe Cement Ltd reported a ’strong improvement’ in half-year figures at its core operating subsidiary, Central Asia Cement JSC.

AIM-listed Steppe was restructured earlier this year, making group-wide
results comparisons invalid, it said.

The operating subsidiary, however, posted pretax earnings of US$11.55m for the six months to June 30, up 51 per cent from $7.65m, with sales of $28.61m, up 45 per cent from $19.69m. Sales by volume rose 14 per cent to 365.44Mt.

In terms of the group, pretax earnings in the first half stood at US$11.51m, on revenue of US$28.61m.

Steppe said its key Kazakh cement market grew 30 per cent in the first half, and it expects it to grow 20 per cenet by the year end, to 6Mt.

The group also noted it is moving to contain costs in the face of rising oil prices, which have weighed on utility and transport costs.