Transport strike impacts Pakistan cement production

Transport strike impacts Pakistan cement production
Published: 11 December 2012


A week-long strike by the All Pakistan Goods Transport Owners Association (APGTA) is impacting the production of cement in Pakistan as manufacturers face a shortage of raw material supplies. Concerns are also now mounting that interruptions to production will disrupt the domestic supply chain as well as export deliveries.

For the past week, truck owners have stopped picking up coal consignments for factories from the Port of Qasim, near Karachi, as they are striking over the enforcement of a revised maximum load limit that commercial vehicles can legally carry as well as security issues.

According to the All Pakistan Cement Manufacturers Association (APCMA), the supply of coal and various raw materials are not being transported to cement producers which is likely to hurt production and subsequently supplies of cement to retail market in the coming days. A statement by the APCMA said the cement industry alone consumes arond 4.5Mta of coal, approximately 14,000-15,000t of which is transported daily from Port Qasim to different factories, including Punjab and northern parts of the country

The APCMA told CemNet News that the cement industry would see shortages of raw materials in due course if the strike does not ended immediately. The APCMA demanded the government help to resolve the issues of goods carried at the? earliest to ensure the uninterrupted supply of coal to factories. 

The spokesman said that  if the government ignores the issue, the situation will badly hit the whole cement sector which is already facing multiple issues of higher costs of operation. It warned that the disruption to production could eventually lead to the whole construction industry suffering a shortage of cement. The official has not ruled out the possibility that the strike could also affect the delivery of exports.

Transporters are currently on strike across the country after the motorway police mandated that trucks cannot weigh more than 58.5t while carrying their cargo. Prior to that enforcement, the upper limit was 80t, which included 28t as weight of the truck itself. In addition to that dispute, goods’ transporters have also demanded that they be provided with security “in the city, on the motorways and highways.”

Pakistan apex trade body the Federation of Pakistan Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FPCCI) has also requested government to play their role and get this strike finished in order to safe import and export business.