GCC cement companies witnessed a 24.3 per cent increase in revenues in the first quarter, reaching US$1.26bn (AED4.62bn) as construction picked up in certain parts of the region, according to a recent report.
The industry's profits rose to US$435.6m, compared to US$359.54m in the first quarter of last year, a growth of 21.2 per cent. However, according to Global Investment House's report, net margins suffered a fall of 90.4 basis points during the period. Gross margins witnessed a 233.6 basis point increase in the first quarter to 43.7 per cent compared to 41.4 per cent, which was due to an increase in selling prices accompanied by a drop in prices of fuel.
UAE and Oman, which used to report declining sales revenues, reported higher revenues due to the better operating [environments] in both countries. [The] sales revenue of UAE firms increased by 7.7 per cent to US$258.1m, bringing gross margin back to double digits of 10.5 per cent," the report said.