Three major Japanese cement producers plan to increase their shipping capacity for the distribution of cement throughout the country to meet current and expected increases in demand.
According to a recent Nikkei report, Sumitomo Oskaka Cement will spend JPY6.8bn on a new 8000t ship in February, followed by two 2000t ships and a 5500t ship after April 2015. Despite decommissioning three older vessels, its total fleet will expand to 20 ships with a combined capacity of 93,000t compared to this year's 19 vessels and 82,000t.
Ube-Mitsubishi Cement plans to use three additional 7000-12,000t ships in February or later, the report stated, two of which will be newly-built and the other rented. Meanwhile, market leader Taiheiyo Cement will add three large ships to its fleet for about JPY2bn next year, or later.
The increases in fleet sizes is being attributed to a revival of construction activity in large cities, rebuilding following the 2011 earthquake and tsunami and an anticipated increase in demand construction work related to the 2020 Olympics to be held in Tokyo.