Jamaica’s parliament has approved the 40.8% duty on imported cement, clearing the way for Caribbean Cement (CCC) to carry out the postponed US$100m capital investment in its Kingston plant, the Jamaica Observer reported.
CCC filed for protection in September 2003 with Jamaica’s anti-dumping and subsidies commission, saying it was being hurt by imports and needed to be protected while it upgraded its plant, BNamericas previously reported.
The plant upgrade plan comes in anticipation of the lowering of tariffs that is expected under the proposed Free Trade Areas of the Americas (FTAA).
The commission initially recommended a temporary tariff increase from 15% to 40.8%, which the government approved last December. In July this year, the commission said the tariff should remain at that level for four years, which is what the parliament has now approved.
The investment to expand capacity is considered important as this year’s cement demand is expected to be 11% higher than in 2003, due to increased construction sector activity and to a cement