Mexican cement giant Cemex expects to reach sales revenues of US$1.7bn for the fourth quarter this year, translating into full-year sales revenues in excess of US$7bn, the company announced in a Q4 forecast statement. Free cash flow is expected to exceed US$210m, for a total US$1.1bn for 2003. Operating income is forecast to exceed US$340m, the statement added.
Ebitda for this quarter is expected to surpass US$500m, a 20 per cent increase from the same year-ago period. Ebitda for 2003 may surpass US$2.1bn, the statement said, which is due in part to lower operating costs and administrative expenses as a result of investments and expense containment efforts. In 4Q03, Cemex expects the domestic gray cement volume to remain equal to the same-period last year and is expected to be three per cent higher for 2003, compared to the previous year. "Going forward, we maintain our preference for applying our free cash flow to reduce net debt to further strengthen our balance sheet, providing us with greater financial flexibility until accretive investment opportunities arise," the statement quoted Cemex CFO Rodrigo Trevino as saying.