Cement production in the Czech Republic rose by 15% to 3.8Mt last year while domestic sales increased five per cent to around 3Mt, the Association of Cement Producers said. However, this recovery is expected to only be temporary as the construction sector is seen declining this year.
CTK Business News quoted Jan Hrozek, board of directors chairman of cement producer Ceskomoravsky Cement, saying: "Taking a closer look, it is obvious that optimism is inappropriate.”
Hrozek attributes the rise in last year’s cement consumption figures is attributed to the launch of a number of delayed construction projects which were held back in 2010 due to adverse weather conditions.
"In the first quarter (of 2011), cement consumption increased by more than 30 per cent YoY. This growth did not repeat in the following period," he said.
"Investors stopped preparations of transport construction projects. Opportunities of repair and reconstruction funds are also limited. Housing construction will probably stagnate after the recovery in 2011," Hrozek said.
"We estimate that cement consumption will drop this year by around five per cent, which means that would get back to the result of the year 2010," he added.
Cement exports during 2011 witnessed considerable gains of 46 per cent YoY to 842,793t in 2011. Exports to Poland, in particular, rose 2.5 times to 263,441t.