Turkish cement, clinker and ready-mixed concrete producer Mardin Cimento, plans to withdraw from the Syrian market and concentrate on exports to Iraq in 2005 in a bid to increase profitability, it was reported on December 29, 2004. Currently, the company directs 80 per cent of its exports to Iraq and the remainder to Syria. Mardin Cimento sold over 400,000t of products for January to September 2004 abroad and its exports account for 46 per cent of its total sales. The company, which is part of the cement division of Turkish army pension fund Oyak, started production in 1975 and made its first exports to Iraq and Syria the same year.
Mardin Cimento, which runs two concrete plants in Mardin and Diyarbakir, both in southeastern Turkey, has an annual capacity of 640,000t of clinker and 1.3Mt of cement. Mardin Cimento also plans to invest some 3.0 trln lira (US$2.2m) in modernisation.