New special berths to help increase cement imports through Dubai ports

New special berths to help increase cement imports through Dubai ports
Published: 20 August 2004

With the continued growth of the property market in the UAE, Dubai Ports Authority and Jebel Ali Free Zone are committed to providing facilities and docking berths for RMC Gulf and other suppliers importing cement to developers in the UAE.

These berths will increase the traffic of cement into Dubai considerably and the exemption of duty means that cement prices will be competitive with those of local cement suppliers, and will help to stabilise the market price.

Commenting at the event, Sultan Bin Sulayem, Executive Chairman of Dubai Ports Authority and Executive Chairman for Nakheel Corporation said, “We are encouraging cement importation into the UAE because the market price at present is high, and as with all fair trade markets we do not want to enforce price restrictions. This agreement will help to develop the local import and export markets and supports the government’s initiatives to increase international trading and investment.”

The local suppliers and manufacturers currently deliver between 90-95 per cent of the cement to the UAE market and it is estimated that this volume will continue even with the delivery of foreign imports of cement to the country.

“For us at RMC, it is important to demonstrate that the bulk supply of cement into the UAE is possible. This supply chain is of course crucial at this time of rapid commercial and residential development and expansion in Dubai. We have found that in May alone this year, there were short falls from local suppliers of 40% on a daily basis which obviously has a knock on effect to the large number of developments here,” said Graeme Clack, Chief Executive for RMC Gulf. “Since our agreement with the Dubai Ports Authority, we have successfully delivered 3 shipments of several thousand tonnes of cement to the UAE from Taiwan and Egypt and are looking to broaden our shipment routes to include India in the future”.

The Dubai Ports Authority’s opening of berths to suppliers such as RMC, means that self facilitating tankers can dock and distributed thousands of tonnes of cement on a daily basis to developers and ensures that construction continues smoothly for private and commercial projects.

“With the current market climate as it is, it is economical for us to import cement so as not to delay development of projects or increase costs. And as long as there is no economical reason not to import and the standard of the cement is in compliance to international standards and testing, Nakheel will continue to do so. We are a business and opening markets which in the long term develops rather than restricts, is the direction that we should always be encouraging,” concluded Bin Sulayem.