Pakistan exported 7.682Mt and earned US$443.63m in FY14-15 (July 2014 - June 2015) compared to 8.81Mt at US$508.15m, according to data from the country's Bureau of Statistics. The data translates to a fall of 12.88 per cent and 12.77 per cent in terms of quantity and revenue, respectively.
Statistics show that exports to Afghanistan were down by 21.4 per cent to 2.87Mt compared to 3.65Mt during FY13-14. A spokesman for the All Pakistan Cement Manufacturers Association attributed the decline in exports to an influx of Iranian cement and a slowdown in economic activity.
Exports via sea fell five per cent. However, exports to India showed marginal growth, rising by 2.82 per centto 696,417t versus 677,306t in the previous fiscal.
In terms of exports by region, the north posted a decline of 17.56 per cent while the south registered nominal YoY growth of 0.34 per cent.
June 2015 update
During June 2015 – the closing month of FY14-15 – Pakistan exported 508,541t of cement on revenues of US$30.25m compared to 542,334t at US$30.99m in May, 2015, down 6.23 and 2.38 per cent in terms of volume and dollar value. Similarly, on an annual comparative basis (June 2014: 858,597t at US$49.14m), the decline translated to a 40.77 per cent drop in volumes and 38.44 per cent fall in dollar value.
APCMA calls for freight subsidy
The APCMA spokesperson has appealed to the government to support local manufacturers in winning back the Afghanistan market by providing a freight subsidy to compete with what it says is highly -subsidised Iranian cement. He said slower growth in cement exports to India were mainly due to non-tariff barriers erected by the Indian authorities.
Price hikes pending
Going forward, the spokesman pointed to increases in the cost of production following the government's Budget announcement for FY15-16, and warned that cement prices are likely to increase soon due to increase in duty on imported coal, imposition of Gas Infrastructure Development Cess and increase in electricity tariff.