The Minas plant of the Compañia Uruguaya de Cemento Portland (CUCP) has forecast to increase its by 150 per cent this year as the neighbouring Ancap plant is expected to close follwing a period of uncertainty, labour strikes and kiln shut-downs.
Nelson Marinello, manager of the Minas facility said that for 2003, it was forecast that about 170,000t of cement would be sold, however 230,000t were delivered, 26 per cent more than expected. This increase is due to export sales to neighbouring Brazil and a small increase in demand in the internal market.
While exports reached 17 per cent of production, the Uruguayan market consumed 83 per cent. For the current year, an increase of 5 per cent in the domestic market is forecast, but a 150 per cent increase in exports. Marinello stated that Brazil’s cement demand close to the border with Uraguay cannot currently be met by local Brazilian production.