Lafarge Group turnover rose by 6.3 per cent to €7,220m in the first half of the year, of which cement contributed €3,797m, an increase of 6.9 per cent. Cement deliveries were 0.9 per cent higher, or up by 0.3 per cent on a comparable structure, to 58.3Mt. Concrete and aggregates generated turnover 10.9 per cent higher at €2,337m, with aggregates shipments up by 5.3 per cent to 107.7Mt and ready-mixed concrete deliveries advancing by 4.5 per cent to 18.5m³. Turnover from the gypsum operations increased by 6.1 per cent to €717m, with plasterboard shipments rising by 1.5 per cent to 341m m², but the roofing business saw turnover fall by 4.2 per cent to €681m, principally on the back of lower concrete tile shipments and the weak German market, where volumes dropped by 22.7 per cent in concrete and by 6.8 per cent in clay.
European cement deliveries were 0.2Mt lower at 20.2Mt, with external turnover 2.9 per cent higher at €1,349m, with a further €117m generated by supplying group downstream operations. Domestic deliveries in Germany were 21.7 per cent lower, though prices there improved by around 19 per cent. Other notable volume reductions were seen in Poland, which had had an exceptionally strong first half last year, with a 16.6 per cent fall, Greece, where domestic deliveries dropped by 11.7 per cent, the United Kingdom, and Serbia, with declines of 7.0 per cent and 3.1 per cent respectively. However, exports from Greece rose, leaving production there little changed. On the positive side, the group’s domestic deliveries rose by 13.0 per cent in Romania, by 5.8 per cent in Spain, by 4.6 per cent in Russia and by 1.4 per cent in France. In France and Great Britain, the main downstream markets, aggregates shipments declined by 4.7 per cent and 5.5 per cent respectively, while increases were reported in ready-mixed concrete of 6.8 per cent in France and 4.8 per cent in Britain.