Holcim Philippines, Inc. has swung to profits last year with net income after tax of P1.2bn from a net loss of P318.7m in 2003.
In a statement, the company attributed the turnaround to a recovery in cement prices, increased export volume and low level of cement import.
Holcim Philippines, formerly Union Cement Corp., said business conditions in 2004 remained difficult with domestic demand falling by almost three per cent. The continuing increases in fuel and electricity prices, which rose 50 per cent YoY, continued to put pressure on costs.
"The year 2004 has been a fruitful but challenging year for Holcim Philippines and the future will continue to be more challenging for the business," said Paul O’Callaghan, chief operating officer. He said demand continues to be low while government funds are limited for infrastructure spending.
"The continuing increases in the costs of fuel and power are also expected to significantly affect our cost of operation. The company needs to aggressively pursue other options especially on the use of alternative fuels and raw materials," he said.
He said the influx of cement imports will continue to be a threat as the regional oversupply remains.