Cement prices to rise on back of fuel hikes – Jordan

Cement prices to rise on back of fuel hikes – Jordan
Published: 17 March 2006

Jordan Cement Factories Company (JCFC) will increase the price of cement after the implementation of the government’s decision to hike the price of oil derivatives in April, JCFC Managing Director Rasheed Ben Yakhlouf said.

"The increase in cement prices will reflect the new oil prices in the Kingdom," Yakhlouf said.The government announced this week that the price of oil derivatives would rise by an average of 25 per cent.

To offset the effects of the hike on low-income families, the government has set up a JD61.7m fund to be distributed in April and September of this year. Yakhlouf said the cement market grew by 16 per cent in 2005, with the price of cement rising by 18 per cent as a result of oil prices increasing by more than 100 per cent.

JCFC Board Director Omar Bdair told journalists this week that the cement market is expecting a further boost this year as the construction sector is expected to grow by 10-15 per cent. "The growth in the market has been a trend since 2003, when it grew by 20 per cent," Bdair said.

Yakhlouf said the current cement price in the Kingdom is JD55/t, excluding taxes. “The company supplies its distributors at JD73-74/t, while they sell it on at JD80-85/t," said Yakhlouf. However, he added that prices had reached as high as JD90-95/t in 2005. "We are ready to cooperate with the Ministry of Industry and Trade to maintain stable cement prices," Yakhlouf stressed.

Bdair told The Jordan Times that "the company’s performance had improved since privatisation, adding that the company posted a 2005 net profit of JD67m, while in 2004 it stood at JD52m.